MKs sign letter in support of Ariel detainee

Thursday, June 23, 2022, 9:47 Yesterday (Wednesday) dozens of Knesset members signed a letter to Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai and Ronen Bar, the head of the GSS, demanding that the Ariel resident who was detained after defending a group of attacked children be allowed to meet with his attorney. Part of the letter reads as follows: “At this time, a Jew is detained and prevented from meeting with an attorney. This is at a time that none of the rioters who attacked Jews with clubs and rocks have been detained. Preventing [a detainee] from meeting with an attorney violates a fundamental legal right. We demand that he be allowed to meet with his attorney immediately.”

Among the signatories of the letter, who belong to many political parties, are MK David Bitan (Likud), MK Michael Malkieli (Shas), MK Miri Regev (Likud), MK Yosef Taieb (Shas), MK Itamar Ben Gvir (Religious Zionism), MK Fateen Mulla (Likud), MK Shlomo Karhi (Likud), MK Orit Struk (Religious Zionism), MK Gadi Yevarkan (Likud), MK Avi Maoz (Religious Zionism), MK Etty Atia (Likud), MK Idit Silman (Yemina), and MK David Amsalem (Likud).

This letter follows sharp criticism by members of Knesset of the police for not allowing the detainee to meet with his attorney and be properly represented. Yesterday (Wednesday), MK Moshe Arbel (Shas) took advantage of his right to speak before the Knesset plenum and asked Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Public Security Minister Omer Bar-Lev why the detainee was forbidden to meet with his attorney. Likewise, the Knesset Land of Israel Lobby addressed the matter and said, “It is inconceivable that not one of the Arabs who participated in the attack has been detained, and the sole detainee is a Jew who apparently was forced to defend attacked children, and now he is even prevented from meeting with an attorney.”

On Wednesday afternoon, the Ariel resident who shielded the children with his own body went to the Ariel Police Station to give testimony and file a complaint against the rioters. To his shock, instead of taking his testimony, the police detained him and did not allow him to meet with Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar, who is representing him.‏

This morning, Honenu was informed that court hearings will take place today in the detainee’s case. At 11:30 a hearing will take place at the Jerusalem District Court on the appeal filed by Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar demanding that the detainee be allowed to meet with him. At 13:00 a hearing will take place at the Ashkelon Magistrates Court on a possible remand extension for the detainee. The hearing will take place in Ashkelon because the detainee is being held in a GSS facility in the area. Honenu Attorney David HaLevi will represent the detainee at the first hearing and Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar at the second.

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