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Acco attack victim threatened at court hearing

Updated: 3 days ago

Please click here for a list of posts relating to the mid-May Arab rioting throughout Israel and click here for a list of posts relating to cases in which Honenu has represented victims of rock or Molotov cocktail attacks.

Mor Janashvilli (seated in wheelchair) and his brother; Photo credit: Honenu

Tuesday, June 29, 2021, 17:31 Before the opening of a hearing at the Haifa District Court on the remand extension of suspects in the May 12 attack on Mor Janashvilli, their families called him and his brother terrorists and threatened to murder them. The attack occurred in Acco, during Operation Guardian of the Walls, when Janashvilli drove to visit his mother, a resident of the city.

Janashvilli was injured in the attack and is wheelchair-bound. He described the courtroom incident: “We arrived at the remand extension so that they wouldn’t release the attacker accused of rioting. Before the hearing began, several Arabs came and pointed an accusatory finger at me, [yelled] that I was a terrorist, that I ran over somebody. They almost attacked my brother. They told him, ‘We will murder you,’ as the suspects were openly smiling. I don’t understand what’s happening here. Someone tells me that I’m a terrorist. I’m in a wheelchair. How is that logical?”

His brother added: “I was with him [in the courthouse]. As soon as everything heated up one of the terrorists hissed at me and said, in precisely these words, ‘I’m from Acco. I’ll see to it that we murder you.’ One could say, in precise words, a murder threat. We hope that they will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who is representing Janashvilli, attempted to record a video clip in which he responded to the threats, but was disturbed by one of the threat-makers. Bleicher: “I was a witness to a terrible and shocking incident at the Haifa District Court, before the hearings on the remand extensions of the terrorists who participated in the riots. Their families came to the courthouse and felt like they owned the place. They started to shout at the victims. One of the terrorists’ families shouted ‘You’re a terrorist. You ran over a 12-year-old girl. We will stop you. We’ll take care of you.’”

At this stage, and as Bleicher was speaking, one of the relatives of the rioters interrupted the video and shouted at Janashvilli, “You’re a terrorist,” and gestured at him with his middle finger.

Bleicher continued: “The terrorists’ families are continuing to act as if they own the place. The time has come for the Israeli Police to understand that there is a war going on with terrorists, and they should begin to treat them with a firm hand and not conduct interrogations which do not lead to anything. They should start discovering the truth behind these terror organizations that created the disturbances and intend to resume their rioting as soon as they have an opportunity.”

Janashvilli was driving through Acco when dozens of Arab rioters charged at his car and pelted it with large rocks, heavy furniture, and anything else they could get their hands on. He lost control of his car and drove it into a wall. The rioters did not stop pelting the car and Janashvilli, who was injured by now, fled from his car with his hands over his head. The Arab mob beat him until he collapsed on the ground in a semi-conscious state. Janashvilli resigned himself to a horrible death and then felt his face being cut with a knife. He was saved at the last moment, apparently by Arabs who rescued him from the site and called the emergency services. He was evacuated by ambulance to the hospital, suffering from bruises on his entire body, broken bones, cuts on his face, partial paralysis in his left leg, headaches and dizziness.

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