Source: (2006) Paper from "The Next Step: Developing Restorative Communities, Part 2," the IIRP’s 8th International Conference on Conferencing, Circles and other Restorative Practices, October 18-20, 2006, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA.

Today penal systems and criminal codes are to a great extent a means of addressing the offense between the sovereign power and the offender. Criminal law of the modern-day state of Israel, like most modern systems, is based on retributive concepts of justice and reflects the norms of Jewish criminal laws in only very small measure.6 Yet alongside the country’s retributive criminal legal system, traditional population groups have long practiced restorative justice. Over the past 15 years restorative practices have also been introduced in the work of various Israeli government services. Traditional restorative practices can be found in each of the three primary yet diverse traditional populations in the state of Israel: a) Muslim and Christian Arab, Bedouin and Druze minorities, which comprise approximately 20 percent of the Israeli population, b) Ultra-Orthodox Jews, who comprise close to 8 percent of the population, and c) Jews who immigrated from Ethiopia, who comprise less than 1 percent of the population. In this presentation I will describe the traditional practices that are in use and will expand on the newly developed restorative practices in Israel. (excerpt)

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