Yitzhar minor’s grandparents, friends harassed by police

Monday, July 4, 2016, 19:27 On Tuesday, July 5, the Petah Tikva Magistrate Court is expected to announce a decision concerning the release conditions of the Yitzhar minor banned from entering all of Yehuda and Shomron, including his own home. Currently, and until the decision is announced, the minor is required to inform the police every night of his location for the night. Despite this arrangement the police have continued to harass the minor’s family, in violation of agreements and formal declarations made by police representatives in court. In a deliberation which took place at the Central District Court in Lod on Friday, June 24, after the minor was detained at his home, Honenu Attorney Chai Haber, who is representing him, explained that the minor’s grandparents are not able to host him for a long period of time, among other reasons because of the custom of the police to arrive every night at the small hours of the night at the houses at which individuals under house arrest for nationalistic reasons are staying, and very disruptively verify that the individual is at home for the night. See more here. In response the police representative, Commander Shai DeCosta, formally declared in court that the police will not carry out checks at the minor’s grandparents’ home in the small hours of the night. “I am willing to formally declare. The police obligate themselves to not carry out house checks during the small hours of the night, even though this is a matter of house arrest in effect only at night.” However this week, on one of the days the minor informed the police that he would stay at his grandparents’ home, at approximately 4:00 AM the police knocked loudly at their door and called out to them. According to the minor’s family when the grandfather told the policemen that he was on his way to open the door, the policemen hurried him by yelling in a demeaning manner. When the grandparents opened the door and asked the policemen why they had arrived at such a time, they answered that they would come whenever they wanted. The grandmother said afterwards that she found it very difficult to fall asleep and to function the next day after the startling house check. “The police know very well that the grandparents are elderly and that their health is likely to suffer, but despite that they came at four in the morning like that,” said the minor’s family, who added that the grandmother complained that she does not understand how the police expect them to host their grandson on a regular basis if this is how the police conduct themselves. Policemen have also arrived several times this past week at other host families’ homes late at night to verify if the minor is complying with the administrative house arrest order. In one of the instances policemen arrived at the host family’s home one day after they had hosted the minor, even though he had declared that he was spending the night in a completely different region. Also then the policemen were rude and unnecessarily disruptive. “I live on a small side street in Givatayim, and at 11 at night policemen arrived in a police car, parked on the sidewalk, got out with their loud police radios, and rang the neighbor’s doorbell by accident, even though we have name plate,” said the head of household. “The neighbors woke up and the policemen instead of ringing our doorbell through the intercom and asking us to go out to them, climbed over the fence and very loudly rang our doorbell, holding the buzzer down for a long time. My wife was startled and when we opened the door we saw a policewoman. The minor wasn’t even at our home on that day. “I help them implement the law by ensuring that the minor sleeps at a home like the judge ordered and they punish me? Why does the entire street have to know about it? Now the neighbors think that we have stolen property or drugs or something. I told the police, come dressed like civilians, ring the doorbell like human beings or call us and we’ll bring the youth out to you. Instead of that they roughly wake up the entire street.” The minor’s family is continuing their protest against the order. Last Shabbat (Saturday, July 2) the family stayed in a tent in the Ramat Amidar neighborhood of Ramat Gan. The father of the minor said that during Shabbat hundreds of area residents came to the tent to hear their story. He said that everyone who stopped at the tent expressed support for the family and voiced complaints about the way a minor was thrown out of his own home. A group of Ramat Gan youth organized a protest after Shabbat opposite the home of Major General Roni Numa, the GOC of the Central Command, who signed the Yitzhar minor’s administrative order. The minor’s family distributed fliers to Ramat Gan residents describing the situation brought about by the order served to their son and what the order is. “It was genuinely heartwarming to see the very friendly and cordial support from a wide range of people,” said the minor’s father. “In conversations we raised people’s awareness of the excessive and unjustified administrative orders served to Jewish youth and adults instead of to the Arabs who are trying to kill us. The terror attacks are ‘contained’ and not thoroughly dealt with.”

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