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Petition rejected, detainee not released for sister's wedding


Carmeli family; Photo courtesy of the photographer

Wednesday, December 14, 2022, 11:11 Elhai Carmeli, a Shomron resident in administrative detention under an order signed by outgoing Defense Minister Benny Gantz, did not attend his sister's wedding that took place this week. Carmeli's request to attend the wedding was rejected by Defense Minister Gantz, who replied through the office of the State Attorney that he opposed the request. Carmeli then petitioned the High Court of Justice with the assistance of Honenu Attorneys Adi Keidar and Moshe Poleski. The court rejected the petition.


Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar sharply criticized Minister Gantz's refusal: "The use of administrative orders in the cases before us is unacceptable and disproportionate. Orders meant to protect Israel's security are being used for cynical and narrow political purposes. The refusal to allow my client to attend his sister's wedding, against all logic, adds insult to injury, and is harassment for the sake of harassment. We hope that orders will be examined again soon, with discretion, seriously, and then canceled."


Forty members of Knesset from the incoming coalition wrote to Defense Minister Gantz demanding that he cancel the administrative orders against Carmeli and another Shomron resident, Avraham Yered. The letter is signed by Knesset Members Betzalel Smotrich, Itamar Ben Gvir, Miri Regev, Yuli Edelstein, and Miki Zohar, among others. They strongly criticized issuing the orders and claimed that they are a blatant bypass of legal proceedings: "This is unacceptable use of your authority, while disrespecting and trampling the legal process. These orders were issued without holding a trial, without presenting evidence, while ignoring a court ruling that ordered the release of [Carmeli and Avraham Yered]." Their demand was the "immediate cancellation of the orders."


Carmeli, a married father of a baby, was detained approximately one month ago by police who requested an extension of his remand. The Jerusalem Magistrates Court rejected the request. One minute after the decision, outgoing Defense Minister Benny Gantz signed a four-month administrative order against Carmeli, who is being held in the Russian Compound under harsh conditions.


In November, Avraham Yered was given an administrative detention order. After he was detained the police requested a lengthy remand extension. However, the court extended his remand by only two days and intimated that he would be released soon. DM Gantz decided to bypass the court and served Yered with an administrative detention order. On Saturday night (after Shabbat), dozens of Carmeli and Avraham Yered's friends protested opposite the Russian Compound in Jerusalem where Carmeli is being held.


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