A military appeals court this week issued a rare ruling revoking the administrative detention of a resident of Adi in northern Israel, about 15 miles east of Haifa. His attorney, Menashe Yado from the legal aid society Honenu, said he hoped the court’s message will be internalized by the powers that be.
The President of the Military Court of Appeals, Col. Netanel Benichou, ordered an end to the administrative detention imposed two months ago on the man, who is married and the father of one baby. He was ordered to remain away from his family home and be confined to the town of Ma’aleh Adumim. He was instructed to inform police where he would spend the night, and was also prohibited from communicating with some of his neighbors.
Following an urgent appeal by Yado, accompanied by a request from the head of the Karnei Shomron regional council, where the detainee’s parents live, the OC Central Command agreed to move his house detention and the curfew to Karnei Shomron.
This has since been followed by nightly visits by police to the man’s parents’ home to supervise his compliance. Attorney Yado meanwhile submitted an appeal regarding the validity of the detention, saying it was baseless and constituted a serious violation of his client’s rights and the rights of his family.
Judge Benichou’s ruling said there was nothing in the intelligence information presented to him to justify the detention and the nightly curfew, and so he ordered it void. The judge did support the restriction on the man’s movement in Judea and Samaria save for his parents’ home, and the contact with his neighbors.
The judge reiterated the importance of a defendant’s right to a hearing prior to issuing an administrative detention, and his right to review all the relevant information against him.
According to Honenu, there have only been two cases in which a military court revoked administrative detention orders against Jews. Things are similar in the Arab sector as well.
Attorney Yado said in a statement that the court’s ruling shows that the OC Central Command’s finger is heavy on the trigger of detentions. We are delighted that the court has revoked the nightly curfew imposed on my client and his wife and baby boy, under intense and offensive police visits. Today the court said it was all unjustified, disproportionate and unconstitutional. I hope that the Central Command will internalize this message even a little bit and cease the illegal violations of civil rights.”David Israel