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Rabbis’ letter expresses great concern for detained minors

Friday, January 4, 2019, 9:09 On the morning of Friday, January 4, approximately one


Rabbis' open letter, with first page of signatories

Rabbis’ open letter, with first page of signatories


hundred Religious-Zionist rabbis publicized an open letter sent to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who is in charge of the Israeli Police. The letter has been written in light of the interrogation by the GSS of three minors who have not met with an attorney and is signed by approximately one hundred of the most senior and venerated Religious-Zionist rabbis. “We have been following with great concern the remand of the three Jewish youths currently held by the GSS, who are still prevented from meeting with an attorney. “Only this week we were exposed to the unacceptable interrogation methods of the GSS in the Duma case, and only this week a court invalidated confessions extracted by the GSS from a suspect in a nationalist crime.” In conclusion the rabbis wrote, “As those responsible for the legal and law enforcement systems, we expect you to ensure that the youths receive all of their rights granted to them by law, like every youth and child in the State of Israel. An investigation meant to investigate the truth cannot be conducted in secret while trampling on rights.” The letter is signed by approximately one hundred rabbis of cities, heads of yeshiva, and rabbis of various communities, among them Rabbi Aryeh Stern, the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, Rabbi Tzefania Drori, the Rabbi of Kiryat Shemona and Head of Yeshivat Kiryat Shemona, Rabbi Dr. Eliyahu Zini, the Head of Yeshivat Or VeYeshua, Haifa, Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, the Rabbi of Tzfat and member of the Council of the Chief Rabbinate, Rabbi Shmuel David, the Rabbi of Afula, Rabbi Yehoshua Shapira, the Head of Yeshivat HaHesder Ramat Gan, Rabbi Avraham Gisser, Rabbi of Ofra, Rabbi Ze’ev Vitman, Rabbi of Alon Shevut, Rabbi Levanon, Elon Moreh, Chief Rabbi of the Shomron, Rabbi Elhanan Ben Nun, Rabbi of Shilo, Rabbi Elisha Aviner, Yeshivat Ma’aleh Adumim, Rabbi Shmuel Tal, Head of the Torah Chaim institutions,Yad Binyamin, Rabbi Yehuda HaLevi Amichai, the Head of the Torah and Land Institute, Rabbi Nehorai Meir, the Chairman of the Beit Hillel organization and Rabbi of Masu’ot Yitzhak, and Rabbi Eli Altshuler, Rabbi of Mitzpeh Netufa. The youths, who are all minors, will spend Shabbat in remand and have not met with an attorney. Their families expressed concern that they would be interrogated on Shabbat, as has happened in other cases, see here, here, and here. Honenu Attorneys Adi Keidar and Nati Rom, who are representing the minors, stated that, “We are disturbed by the fact that the minors will remain in remand over the weekend. We unequivocally demand that the GSS interrogators and the police respect the sanctity of the Sabbath, that they refrain from interrogating the minors on Shabbat and that the minors be provided with everything they need to observe Shabbat. Attorney Itamar Ben Gvir added, “There have been interrogations during which GSS agents desecrated the Sabbath, forced interrogatees to listen to music, showed them films, and violated the sanctity of the Sabbath. The gatekeepers, who are not the Attorney General, but rather the politicians, the Prime Minister and the Knesset Ministers, are expected to ensure that the minors have a Shabbat that looks like a Shabbat.”

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