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The Law Prohibiting Terror Advertising – Questions and Answers

Today (November 8, 2023), the Knesset approved a law stipulating that systematic and continuous advertising of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in certain circumstances, will constitute a criminal offense punishable by up to one year of imprisonment.


Following public criticism of the original wording of the proposed law, changes were introduced that slightly mitigate its impact: the approved law mandates additional external circumstances for prosecution, indicating an association with Daesh (ISIS) or Hamas, not solely the passive consumption of such advertisements. However, given the ambiguity surrounding the elements of the offense, subject to interpretation by the authorities, it is unclear whether this addition will reduce the inherent damage in the law and prevent innocent citizens from being suspected of terror offenses.


Despite the modifications, the law remains unprecedented in democratic countries and may have a chilling effect on freedom of expression. There is a gap between the extreme cases that concern the security service (Shin Bet), which the law aims to prevent, and the language of the law, which might also affect innocent citizens who have no intention of committing acts of terror.

What does the law stipulate?

The law states that continuous and systematic publication of advertisements by Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in circumstances indicating an affiliation with a terrorist organization, is a criminal offense punishable by one year of imprisonment. Advertisements that fall under the category of systematic and continuous dissemination are those containing a direct call to commit a terrorist act, expressions of praise, support, or encouragement of terrorist acts, and documentation of the execution of terrorist acts.


Publication of such advertisements made randomly, unintentionally, or for a legitimate purpose will not be considered an offense.


Due to the challenges posed by the law, it is established as an interim measure (a temporary law) so that the manner of its implementation can be evaluated.

What is the purpose of the law?

What difficulties does the law raise?

Is there a similar law in other democratic countries?

I watch Telegram channels documenting the atrocities of Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Am I at risk?

Lately, Instagram's algorithm has been suggesting videos of Hamas supporters to me. Am I at risk?

An influencer I follow on social media posts numerous images of severe damage in Gaza accompanied by Palestinian flags. Should I stop following them?

I regularly enter Hamas propaganda channels for research or journalistic reporting purposes. Am I at risk?


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