Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Families of 12 missing Jews petition against deal

The families of 12 missing Iranian Jews have petitioned against one clause of the exchange with Hizbullah: Israel's consent to provide information on four missing Iranian diplomats, according to Israel National News.

Among the various obligations Israel took upon itself in the agreement approved by the Cabinet on Sunday is to provide information on four Iranian diplomats who disappeared in June 1982. Israeli forces had just invaded Lebanon in the Peace for Galilee War, in order to put a stop to incessant Palestinian terrorist and rocket attacks against northern Israel. Christian anti-Palestinian forces - the Samir Jaja faction of a Lebanese-Christian militia - apparently captured the four Iranian diplomats, who have never been heard from since.

Attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner of the Shurat HaDin Israel Law Center, representing the families of the 12 missing Iranian Jews, filed suit in the Supreme Court Monday morning. The urgently-filed petition demands that Israel not provide information on the diplomats until reliable and detailed information is received about the missing Jews. The petition makes clear that the target is not the entire agreement with Hizbullah, but rather the clause regarding the information on the Iranian diplomats.

The families of the 12 Jews in question say their loved ones were arrested by Iranian security authorities in the 1990s as they sought to escape from Iran across the border with Pakistan. At least some of them are believed to still be in Iranian prison. The Iranians have never acknowledged the Jews' arrest, nor have they given any word on their status or whereabouts.

The petitioners argue that the government must honor the obligations imposed upon it by the Israeli High Court approximately two years ago to "push forward diligently, sparing no effort, to gain information about the [12 missing] Jews of Iran."

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Ynet News

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