MK Strock seeks law to also allow settlers to defend property with live fire

MK Orit Strock seeks equality under the law for settlers who “obey [the] rules of engagement, don’t shoot at burglars, & are forced to absorb heavy losses” whereas other Israelis don’t.



Settlers should have the same right to defend their property under the so-called Dromi Law as Israelis who live within the Green Line, MK Orit Strock (Habayit Hayehudi‏) said Tuesday.

Orit Strock

Orit Strock – Photo: Michal Fattal

Instead, she charged, their rights are restricted by the Israel Defense Forces’ rules of engagement.

She is therefore demanding that the rules be changed to allow settlers to confront “nationalist attacks” against Jewish property with live fire. The Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee will hold a special hearing to examine how the law is applied in the West Bank.

The Dromi Law absolves a person who shoots a burglar from criminal liability. Since it’s part of the Penal Code, it should apply to Jewish residents of the West Bank as well. In practice, however, the IDF has issued stringent rules of engagement for the West Bank so as to prevent friction between Jews and Palestinians.

Strock said she had obtained a copy of the orders the IDF issues to settlement security officers, and “they say it’s permitted to shoot only in a situation of certain danger to life. The Dromi Law, by contrast, says you are allowed to drive off a person who threatens either your property or your person − including by shooting [at him]. When I contacted the military advocate general and asked him why he had decided to limit the ability of [West Bank] residents to respond with gunfire even though it’s permitted by law, he responded that it’s the military commander’s right to restrict something that the law permits.”

Strock said that if such a case came to court, she believes the accused would be acquitted even if the shooting took place in a settlement, as long as the intruder met the Dromi Law criteria.

“I don’t expect any problem with those who shoot to fend off intruders,” she said. “My question is what happens to all those who obey these rules of engagement, don’t shoot at burglars, and are forced to absorb heavy losses.”


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