Jurisdiction as Sovereignty Over Occupied Palestine: The Case of Khan-al-Ahmar

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In the context of prolonged occupation, it has long been argued that the Israeli Supreme Court (ISC), in High Court of Justice (HCJ) formation, is facilitating the entrenchment of a permanent regime of legalized control by moving away from a model of exception to ordinary civilian jurisdiction over the West Bank. This was recently demonstrated in the Khan-al-Ahmar case, in which a group of settlers petitioned the ISC/HCJ demanding the execution of a pending Israeli demolition order over a school in a Bedouin village in Palestine. The court sided with the army, deferring to a political solution for the transfer of the entire Bedouin community elsewhere. Drawing on existing scholarship and the author’s first-hand impressions of the final hearing, this article interprets the Khan-al-Ahmar case as an illustration of how the exceptional military nature of the occupation has shifted to a permanent regime of legalized control overseen by an ordinary civilian court.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311 - 332
Number of pages22
JournalSocial and Legal Studies
Issue number3
Early online date23 Sep 2016
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2017


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