Defense Minister Yoav Gallant (Likud) on Monday signed three administrative detention warrants against Jewish youths, Hakol Hayehudi reported. This brings the number of Jewish administrative detainees to a record number of eight concurrently. A total of 12 Jews were arrested since the establishment of the latest Netanyahu government in January, surpassing the record set under Rabin’s Oslo government after the 1994 Baruch Goldstein killings of Arabs in the Cave of the Patriarchs.
The orders were signed for periods of three, four, and six months. One of the detainees was arrested two weeks before his wedding. Another detainee is a soldier on pre-discharge leave. A third detainee is an honorably discharged soldier who is the grandson of Rabbi Zvi Tau, head of the Har Hamor yeshiva.
The Honnu legal aid society reported that two of the detainees were released by the court two weeks ago after the court had rejected the police’s request to extend their detention and determined that they must be released. The three were detained once again on Monday morning for interrogation, and then Gallant signed their administrative detention.
The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention focuses on the determination of whether detention is arbitrary or not, which is murky in cases of administrative detention, as opposed to criminal arrests. The group has proposed guidelines to help such determination, suggesting that any deprivations of liberty that violate the freedom of association must be deemed arbitrary. Based on these guidelines, the group has condemned countries that have used long-term administrative detention when the detainees were held for the mere fact of belonging to an “illegal organization.”
Essentially, this means that arrests based on testimony by Shin Bet agents who were present in a gathering of a suspected group where the detainee was present is illegal on its face and may constitute a violation of international law.