|Palestinian stone throwers could face 20 years in jail||
The Zionist regime’s ministry of justice finished drafting an amendment to the law prohibiting the throwing of stones at Israeli vehicles, military vehicles and police vehicles.
The proposed amendment provides for stone throwers to be sentenced for up to 20 years in prison, Israeli media reported on Tuesday.
The amendments do not require Israeli prosecutors to prove that the stone throwing caused any danger. It justifies the new amendments on the grounds that current laws compel the prosecution to make a list of other charges besides stone throwing in order to convince the court to impose rulings against defendants.
The amendment mandates two sentences for throwing stones, a 10 year sentence when danger is posed for passing vehicles and the flow of traffic; and a 20 year sentence in cases when it is proven that assailants intended to endanger their targets.
Haaretz newspaper said that the new bill targets Palestinian citizens who live in Israel and are subject to Israeli laws. Palestinians in the West Bank are subject to the laws of occupation and military tribunals, which impose even harsher sentences.
Israel reins in military sweep for missing teens
Israel scaled back a search for three missing teenagers in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday after 11 days of operations raised fears of a general uprising and undermined Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
With the Muslim holy month of Ramadan set to start on Saturday, an Israeli government official said members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's security cabinet had expressed concern that events could "escalate out of control", Reuters reported.
Growing international criticism about the impact on ordinary Palestinians has also been taken into account, he said.
Signaling the change in policy, the Israeli military said on Tuesday that only four Palestinians had been arrested during overnight operations compared with 37 the day before.
Israel has accused Abbas's political rivals, the Islamist group Hamas, of orchestrating the abduction of the Jewish youths on June 12. It has launched a massive crackdown in its search for the trio, which has so far failed to find any trace of them.
Up to six Palestinians have died as a result of the military sweep, locals say, and some 355 people have been arrested.
A senior United Nations official cautioned on Monday the army action risked provoking a revolt, while Palestinians in the West Bank have turned on Abbas for offering to help Israel find those behind the kidnapping.
Hamas has declined to deny or acknowledge responsibility for snatching the youths, who vanished while hitchhiking near a Jewish settlement, although it has praised the kidnapping.
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