The Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee decided on Tuesday to promote legislation calling for the exoneration of youngsters who were convicted of attempting to forcibly disrupt Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza and parts of the West Bank in the summer of 2005 and for dropping the charges filed against other anti-disengagement protestors.
Some 500 cases were opened following the arrest of hundreds of anti-disengagement protestors at the time.
The committee's decision, which was initiated by Knesset Member Reuven Rivlin (Likud), was approved in a majority vote. Otniel Schneller of Kadima was the only MK to oppose the initiative.
Schneller requested that the committee allow him to continue in his efforts to try and convince the State Prosecutor's Office to pardon those protestors who have already been convicted and drop the charges against the rest as a gesture of goodwill.
The committee's decision was reached after the prosecutor's office suggested that the pardon requests be filed separately for each protestor.
According to the committee's decision, requests to delay the legal proceedings against protestors who have yet to be indicted will be filed with the prosecutor's office during the week. The committee will decide whether to submit the bill for approval by the Knesset based on the response of prosecutor's office to the pardon requests.