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Ma’aleh Shai razed

Youths at police station; Photo credit: Atty. Rom

Youths at police station; Photo credit: Atty. Rom

Friday, August 28, 2020, 10:48 On the night of Thursday, August 27, large numbers of army and border police forces arrived at Ma’aleh Shai, a new community in the Binyamin region, woke up the youths sleeping at the site, destroyed their residential structure, and cleared out the site. The youths reported severe police brutality during the destruction. One of the youths complained that he had been choked by a border policeman near the police station, and others were injured during the destruction. Ma’aleh Shai was founded in memory of Rabbi Shai Ohayon, Hy”d, who was murdered in Petah Tikva earlier the same week. The security forces violently shoved the dozens of youth, hundreds of meters towards the nearby road, loaded them into an army “safaron”, an armored vehicle designed for transporting soldiers and then they all traveled through several Arab villages. The youths were taken to the Sha’ar Binyamin Police Station, where they were informed that they were being detained over violating a closed military zone order. They were never presented with an order and until they arrived at the police station they had not been told that there was an order. After a short while all of the youths, none of whom were interrogated, were released. Honenu Attorney Nati Rom: “Late at night I arrived at the Sha’ar Binyamin Police Station. There I met a large group of youths who had been removed by border police forces from Ma’aleh Shai, a newly-started Jewish community. All in all the youths had only slept at the site. They were not interrogated on suspicion of any violation and were only told that the site is within a closed military zone. I will note that the youths stated that they were not presented with an order at any stage of the incident. “The youths complained about unusually violent police brutality during the destruction. It is sad to see that at a time of rampant Arab terror and illegal Arab construction, the Israeli Police have chosen to forcibly suppress the start of a new Jewish community. We intend to take action against the police brutality.”

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