In addition to questions about building in or annexing parts of Judea and Samaria, the Peace Index looked at aspects of the investigations of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, including trust in the police and in the attorney-general. In light of what has been revealed about conversations between Netanyahu and Yedioth Ahronoth publisher Arnon Mozes, the Peace Index looked at the public’s attitude toward Israeli media.
“The Kotel compromise presents a proper balance between the will and desire of Orthodox individuals - who are the majority of those praying at the Western Wall -- to continue praying in the main plaza as they always have, and the will and desire of other Jewish groups that want to pray in the vicinity of the Kotel according to their faith."
Ahead of today’s vote on a bill that would enable religious courts to conduct arbitration with the agreement of both parties, similar to the arbitration that takes place in other frameworks, a policy statement was sent to the Ministerial Committee on Legislation by Israel Democracy Institute’s Dr. Benny Porat.
Top Israeli economist, Professor Eytan Sheshinski, has joined IDI as a senior researcher in the Center for Governance and the Economy, under the leadership of Dafna Aviram-Nitzan.
IDI was quoted in nearly 500 articles connected to the Elor Azaria verdict, including interviews with Yohanan Plesner, Yedidia Stern, Mota Kremnitzer, Amichai Cohen, Tamar Hermann and Tehilla Shwartz Altshuler. We reached a potential 403 million individuals, through coverage in 28 countries and 42 states, plus Washington, D.C.
The Regulation Law, if passed by Israel's government will effectively nullify all previous rulings on the issue, substantially weakening Israel's Supreme Court; the government's decision would be in blatant contradiction of international law as well as Israel's commitments; will provide a boost for BDS activists around the world and confirm international community's belief that Israel is annexing the territories.
With the contentious Regulations Bill scheduled to be discussed at a special Knesset committee, the Israel Democracy Institute's 'Forum of Former Ministers' harshly criticized the proposal, stating that it "retroactively overturns a Supreme Court rulings, enables the stealing of land from its owners, violates Israeli law and accepted international legal norms and customs, and is an affront to the very concept of justice."
The Israel Democracy Institute’s Dr. Amir Fuchs came out against the statement by Minister Naftali Bennett that Elor Azaria should be immediately pardoned, even if convicted by the military court. Azaria shot a terrorist who came at soldiers with a knife, after the terrorist was disarmed. Fuchs said that Bennett’s proposal is unadvisable.
The Israel Democracy Institute’s Dr. Gilad Malach, head of the program on Ultra-Orthodox Society in Israel, today came out against a decision made by Interior Minister Aryeh Deri in coordination with the Civil Service Commission to recognize Rabbinical studies as an academic degree in order to allow Haredim to participate in local tenders.
In advance of Wednesday’s discussion in the Knesset Interior and Environment Committee on the Mikveh Bill, the head of IDI’s Religion and State program, Yair Sheleg, sent a policy paper to committee MKs asking them to vote against the bill. He said the bill unacceptably discriminates, something which is known to its sponsors and clear in the bill’s explanatory notes. The legislation was presented by its sponsors in reaction to a Supreme Court ruling that public ritual baths could be used by the wider public, including for non-Orthodox conversions.
IDI's Guttman Center for Surveys examines Israelis' attitudes towards the continued presence in the territories as we move into the 50th year following the Six Day War. Participants discuss the security situation, their factual knowledge of the situation in the West Bank, and their predictions for the future of the territories.
"The Knesset does not have the judicial expertise, knowledge or necessary tools to determine facts. This bill proposes a fully-blown judicial process, including granting MKs the ability to punish other MKs for criminal acts," according to a statement by Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer and Dr. Amir Fuchs.
An Israel Democracy Institute survey of 76 top Israeli businesspeople (C-suite) revealed that only 59 percent believe the Israeli business press is truly independent. The survey, shared during the final session of IDI's Eli Hurvitz Conference on Economy and Society also showed that a minority (38%) believe that the business press influences the Israeli economy.
IDI President Yohanan Plesner responds to a report composed today by an inter-ministerial team led by Defense Ministry Director-General Maj.-Gen. (Res.) Dan Harel suggesting that the government examine the possibility of offering discount prices on homes for members of the Haredi public who serve in the security forces.
Yesterday, IDI held a roundtable discussion on how to appoint senior-level civil service professionals, under the direction of Eli Groner, director-general of the Prime Minister's office. At the forum, Groner discussed a dialogue that will take place Sunday in the Cabinet on the subject of establishing hiring search committees.
Yesterday, a team of Israeli leaders met with President Reuven Rivlin at his residence to form a new caucus focused on restoring the public's faith in Israel's Parliament. The caucus, led by MK Elazar Stern, will work together with the Israel Democracy Institute to improve the Knesset's image.
"The Knesset is one of the most important institutions in our democracy. Improving its ability to function and its image in the eyes of the public is of extreme national importance," said IDI President Yohanan Plesner.
The majority of Israeli Jews (52.8%) say Israel applies the law equally toward Jews and Palestinians living in the West Bank, contrary to a statement made last month by U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro. However, 50.1% of respondents thought Israel would be justified in unequal application of the law toward Jews and Palestinians in the territories.
The index, polled between Dec. 29 and 30, 2015 – before the Jan. 1 Tel Aviv terror attack and before the indictments against the Jewish suspects were handed down – focuses on the Israeli public’s positions on aspects of the efforts to prevent terror attacks and on issues in the background of these incidents, such as the current level of support for the two-states-for-two-peoples solution, the relative bond to the land among Jews and Palestinians, and the balance between Israel’s Jewish and democratic components.
Ahead of Monday's deliberations and expected vote on the final draft of the World Zionist Organization settlement division bill in the House Committee of the Knesset, a representative of the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) sent a sharply worded policy statement to the committee asking that it make fundamental changes to the bill. In the policy statement, Dr. Tehilla Shwartz-Altshuler, the head of IDI's Open Government project, said the bill is a dramatic failure in its lack of willingness to subject the WZO division to certain administrative laws.
Professor Mordechai Kremnitzer and Dr. Amir Fuchs of the Israel Democracy Institute continue to oppose an amendment to the Non-profit Organization Law (Duty of Disclosure for those Supported by Foreign State Entities) on grounds that it reduces freedom of association and expression, and is directed at restricting the activities of human rights organizations.
Following the advancement of an amendment to a Basic Law on the issue of removing the authority of the Supreme Court to intervene in decisions of the Central Elections Committee to cancel candidates or lists from participating in elections, the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) sent out a sharply worded policy paper opposing this proposal.
Regarding today's vote on the state budget: The Israel Democracy Institute calls for cancelling the law by which governments fall apart (vote of no confidence) if state budgets are not passed. The current system negatively impacts the ability of members of Knesset to make sound decisions on behalf of the country, leads to corruption and members acting for personal and party gain.
The Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) spoke out strongly against the graffiti painted on the Supreme Court building, discovered Nov. 4, and said it is a direct result of the slander that has been recently put out there against the court system by Israeli public activists. IDI stressed that it is the job of the Prime Minister and the parties to defend the rule of law.
A sharply worded policy statement by Israel Democracy Institute experts was sent last week to members of the Ministerial Committee on Legislation against the proposed amendment to the party funding law that allow a committee to halt funding to parties that call for placing a boycott on the state of Israel or any area of Israel, including the West Bank.
Upon the release of the findings of the international investigation of Operation Protective Edge: IDI warns that the intervention by international bodies in the investigation of the events of the Operation in Gaza undermines the basis of the international demand to establish investigative mechanisms and weakens the Israeli legal system.