Fighting Terrorism in the Political Arena the Banning of Political Parties
Party Politics, Vol. 14, No. 6, pp. 91-108, 2008
18 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2008 Last revised: 25 Mar 2009
Date Written: October 16, 2008
In recent years, Western democracies have attempted to outlaw political parties alleged to be 'non-democratic'. Provisions in post-World War II constitutions were mainly enacted to exclude Nazi and Fascist parties from participating in the elections. Lately, the banning of political parties has spread to radical and religious parties. Recent debates in Spain, Germany, Turkey and Israel provide some examples of this. This article deals with the legal framework for the disqualification of political parties in Israel, focusing on the new anti-terrorist amendment, which allows for banning lists and individual candidates who support terrorist acts and the use of violence. The new grounds for banning parties are also discussed in a comparative perspective, vis-a-vis the new Spanish law of 2002. The article reveals the dilemmas of Israel, a 'defensive' democracy, in its attempt to deal with support for terrorism by outlawing political parties.
Keywords: party banning, political parties, terrorism, Israel
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