SOURCE: THE WEK
In January this year, 40 Israeli nationals filed a plea in the country’s Supreme Court demanding that the nation’s security forces be stopped from training police officers from Jammu and Kashmir, given allegations of human rights violations.
Al Jazeera covered the issue in a report on Friday. Al Jazeera reported “The document was signed in January after the Israeli Police, Ministry of Internal Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs refused to pre-screen members of India’s police force from the Muslim-majority Himalayan region (Jammu and Kashmir).”
The plea is still pending in the Israeli Supreme Court. Al Jazeera reported that in May, the Israeli government had asked the Supreme Court to dismiss the plea, arguing any investigation of visiting Indian policemen could damage ties with New Delhi.
Israeli lawyer Eitay Mack, who filed the petition, wrote in The Wire earlier in September that the Indian policemen are trained as part of an agreement between the two countries in October 2014, covering counter-terror warfare.
Mack wrote in The Wire, “The Israeli citizens’ petition argues that the fact that India is the ‘biggest democracy in the world’, and an extremely important economic and political partner of the State of Israel and Western countries, cannot legally and morally justify the provision of assistance to specific Indian police officers that are involved and responsible for grave crimes under international law in Kashmir, by way of their training by the police in Israel.”
The petition also alleged that police in Kashmir used live fire and pellet guns, causing “hundreds” to lose their eyesight.
Human rights groups have previously alleged Israeli police training programmes were being used for repressive measures by other countries.
Al Jazeera noted, “A 2018 report by Researching the American-Israeli Alliance and the Jewish Voices for Peace group said ‘mass surveillance, justifying racial profiling and suppressing public protests’ in the US were a result of Israel’s training of US police officers.”
While the activists behind the plea confide they are not confident the Supreme Court will rule in their favour, human rights activist Sigal Kook Avivi told Al Jazeera, “we can’t just sit quietly”