Ofer - Stone Throwing, Remand Extension
Translation: Marganit W.
What it means to be an Israeli at Ofer Military Court during the massacre in Gaza
When I am at Ofer, I talk to families of detainees. Sometimes they approach me (as well as my colleagues) asking if I am an attorney and can help them. I explain that I am there to document and to support the Palestinians, and to report to Israeli society on what goes on there. There are different reactions: some listen, others tell me personal stories, some praise our work, other dismiss it as useless. This time I felt that my presence was not welcome.
There were many family members, all sitting with doleful faces. I know this was caused by the Ramadan fast and by the long wait since early morning, but the atmosphere in general was one of dark despair. When I passed by the yard on my way to the courts, someone made a dismissive gesture at me.
Judge: Lieut.-Col. Hanan Rubinstein
Prosecutor (Israeli Police) Warrant Officer Zid Akatish
Defense: Munzer Abu Ahmad
Suspect: Jihad Ayad Halil Abiat – ID 854768348
Jihad Abiat has been detained since 16.7.14 and this is his second remand extension. He was brought by Border Police from a detention facility in Etzion, still in civilian clothes. Following the hearing he headed to prison.
The investigator requests an 8 days remand extension and presents the court with a secret report and an interrogation plan. From his answer to the attorney we learn that the charge is conspiracy to commit a crime, throwing rocks and risking security in the region. The last activity was a year ago, but there are new incriminations from July 2014.
The judge ordered a remand extension but only until 24.7.14, namely four days.
Later, there was a hearing about alternative to detention for a minor, so I cannot give details.
The prosecutor was Officer Kobi Matza (ret.) whose words and body language reflected his resentment of my presence there. There were three Italian women and a Palestinian-American in court. We spoke after the hearing and I gave them our website so they could read the reports [Thank you to our loyal translator}
The hearing focused on a matter of procedure: the attorney presented a report by a social worker. But right away Lieut. Dvir Wiesel was summoned to argue that during detention, a report could not be submitted. He demanded to summon the author of the report for interrogation.
The judge overruled the objection, both regarding the report and the summons to the social worker.
The alternative to detention was approved, and when I checked with the attorney several days later, I was gratified to hear that the boy had been released.