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Terrorist's attorney: Jewish presence is the problem

Updated: Dec 14, 2022

Please click here for a list of posts relating to cases in which Honenu provided legal counsel to victims of antisemitic attacks in Jerusalem.

Tal Yoshvaev at home; Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Sunday, December 4, 2022, 19:21 In late November, a disgraceful incident occurred during a Jerusalem District Court hearing in the case of one of the terrorists who set the Yoshvaev family's house on fire with a Molotov cocktail in the Shimon HaTzadik neighborhood of Jerusalem approximately nine months previously. The terrorist's attorney claimed that the Yoshvaev family's presence in the neighborhood caused the incident. The attorney turned to Tal Yoshvaev and said, "If you didn't live there, there wouldn't be any problems."


Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who is representing the Yoshvaev family replied to him: "If there weren't any Jews in the Mideast, there wouldn't be any problems." The terrorist's attorney repeated Bleicher's statement out loud, in court.


At the hearing, Tal Yoshvaev described the feelings and the difficulties that his family has experienced since the incident: "It took us a lot of time to recover from this incident. For two entire months, we could not live at home. It was as if we were homeless. I am a student. I lost a year of classes because I needed to recover from the incident. [My wife and I] and our children have been suffering from anxiety since the incident."


Several terrorists hurled Molotov cocktails at the home of the Yoshvaev family in the Shimon HaTzadik neighborhood of Jerusalem in February 2022. The flames set fire to the home, and the fire was particularly strong in the children's bedroom. Fortunately, the family was not at home at the time. The police detained an Arab youth from the neighborhood on suspicion of committing the act with three additional terrorists.


Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who is representing the Yoshvaev family, stated, "Tal and his family are subjected to repeated attacks and attempted attacks by terrorists in their neighborhood who hope to cleanse the area of Jewish residents. We expect the court to impose penalties that deter terror, at least the penalties that the office of the State Attorney has demanded."


Since Operation Guardian of the Walls, the Yoshvaev family has suffered close to 20 acts of terror including fireworks shot from point-blank range at their sukka while Tal was sleeping in it, nine vehicular arson attacks, two Molotov cocktails thrown at their house, an array of fireworks launched at their yard, and many bottles of paint thrown at their car. For more details, see here and here. In February, the police closed off the home of the Yoshvaev family to guests and visitors, including workers who were needed to repair arson damage. The barriers were removed in March in light of a petition to the High Court of Justice.

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