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Human rights group calls to ban ‘Hannibal procedure’

Following the capture and killing of Lt. Hadar Goldin and the IDF’s forceful military response, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel turns to Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to ban the controversial “Hannibal procedure” on legal grounds, and order a probe into the incident, during which some 130 to 150 Palestinians were killed.

“We turn to you to ask that you advise the government and the IDF that in all actions to thwart the abduction of a soldier, one must avoid endangering the life of the abducted, and that opening massive fire to prevent the escape of the kidnappers in a civilian area is strictly prohibited.

“In addition, we ask that you oversee the establishment of a comprehensive investigation on the use of the Hannibal procedure during Operation Protective Edge, which caused ruin in Rafah and led to the deaths and injuries of hundreds of civilians,” ACRI’s legal representation wrote in a letter to Weinstein.

A photo showing Hadar Goldin (L), killed in Gaza on Friday, August 1, 2014, and his brother Zur Goldin (R). (photo by Flash90)
A photo showing Hadar Goldin (L), killed in Gaza on Friday, August 1, 2014, and his brother Zur Goldin (R). (photo by Flash90)

The much contested Hannibal procedure allows Israeli troops to do whatever it takes to foil a kidnapping — even at the risk of the life of the abducted soldier, and regardless of whether the incident takes place in a civilian area.

The attorneys argue that the procedure constitutes a violation of human rights for both the captured soldier and the civilians caught in the crossfire.

While avoiding a kidnapping, and in turn “a situation in which Israel is forced to negotiate for a prisoner release, are both worthy causes,” the letter says, “the means of implementing it must be legal, fair, and measured.”

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