Spain lifts war criminal designation from Netanyahu, 6 other Israeli officials


(JTA) — Spain will not list Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a war crimes suspect in connection with the Mavi Marmara incident, as a National Court judge had ordered.

Two judges from the same court canceled the registration recently, saying the previous judge had made a jurisdictional error in naming Netanyahu and six other Israeli government officials as persons of interest, the El Diario daily reported. The judges’ authority superseded that of Justice Jose de la Mata, who made the ruling in November.

“The 2nd section of Penal Court found the judge adopted this measure without jurisdiction, as the issue had been closed last June,” ACOM, a pro-Israel Spanish group based in Madrid, wrote in a statement Saturday after reviewing the ruling by the two judges.

Under the de la Mata ruling, if the officials came to Spain, they could be detained, arrested or charged.

The other officials are Ehud Barak, Avigdor Lieberman, Moshe Yaalon, Eli Yishai, Benny Begin and Eliezer Marom.

In the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident, Israeli troops killed nine people aboard the Gaza-bound ship after its passengers attacked soldiers who boarded the vessel to prevent it from reaching the Hamas-held enclave in defiance of Israel’s blockade on the territory. Three of the boat’s passengers, who were not killed, were Spanish.

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