Ofer - Release on Bail, Stone Throwing
Translation: Marganit W.
Courtroom 1 - Justice Menashe Vachnish
Prosecutor: Kfir Whitman
Defense: Atty. Munzer Abu Ahmad
Interpreter: Minhal Amar, who did not interpret. He said right away that he couldn’t translate because he does not understand the [legal] language. The judge would not pursue the case without an interpreter. Atty. Tawhid Sha’aban volunteered to translate and he did an excellent job, accurate, clear, and loud, enough to be heard in the back.
Continuing trial of Daoud Mahmoud Halil Rian – ID 906422761
Recap of the earlier chapter:
Daoud Rian took part in a confrontation with soldiers who entered his village. He threw a rock at them. The charge sheet, based on testimony by two soldiers, accuses him of trying to throw a firebomb as well. In the confrontation he was shot, was injured and was taken to Hadassah Hospital for treatment. He was brought into court in a wheelchair and had trouble climbing the stairs to the dock.
The topic today was the defense’s request to release him on bail until the trial, since he poses no danger and is not likely to confront the soldiers, as he cannot walk. There was an exchange between the prosecution and the defense regarding who will provide the medical records. The attorney said he had no access to the medical records, but in the end he was told to bring them to court today.
Daoud Rian looks terrible: he is emaciated, thinner than he was last week, his eyes are sunken and he is very quiet and preoccupied, picking at the skin on his hands. His parents, who were present the previous week were not here today. Instead two of his brothers came.
The prosecutor: “The medical records don’t strike me as proving that he has limited mobility in his legs that prevents him from repeating the offense.” The prison doctor testified in the records that Daoud was not complaining of pain, and the doctor thought his general condition was satisfactory and that he was improving.
“Daoud does not complain of pain”. I’d like to reiterate the Arab proverb that says: if the judge is your enemy, who will you complain to?
What doctor makes such pronouncements when Doud’s face reflects his pain and stress?
“The ideological motives” for Daoud’s actions – mentioned in our previous report – were heard again in today’s hearing. The prosecutor stated that Daoud’s acts were ideologically motivated.
Let me state clearly: the ideological motive for throwing rocks and other offenses that bring thousands of offenders to the court, is the resistance to the occupation. The ideological motive for the prosecutor is the wish to continue oppressing millions of Palestinians, expropriate their land and use them as cheap labor. Daoud and thousands others want freedom and an end to the occupation.
The defense says that the medical records from the treatment are not included in the court file. There is only medical documentation from the prison clinic. In other words, all the documentation is from representatives of the occupation: nothing from a civil or independent agency.
The defense reiterated that the injury prevents Daoud from any further confrontations with the army and that he should be released and sent home.
The judge in his summation recaptured the arguments of both sides and admitted that there is doubt as to the throwing of a firebomb. But he stressed the dangerous ideological motive: the accused acted out of ideological motives which are anchored in his world view and beliefs, so much so that he is willing to sacrifice his life for them.” He added that releasing Daoud would endanger the public. What public? He is no danger to the Palestinians living in the West Bank, but apparently the judge was not thinking of them.
Since the judge realized that not all the medical records had been submitted to the court, he allowed the defense to request reconsideration of the detention until the end of the procedure, provided the submitted medical records prove that Daoud does not pose danger.
The prosecution immediately asked for an injunction, and the judge acceded. Daoud will remain in detention, unless the defense produces the required medical records by tomorrow, Jan. 21 at 17:00. Then, the defense can submit a request for reconsideration.
In short, Daoud’s road to a release is very long, and if the defense requests a reconsideration, the next hearing will take place on 15.2.15.
Later in the day we attended several other hearings. As expected, the charges were: staying illegally in Israel, using false IDs and throwing rocks and other objects. We had no list and the disorder in the court was greater than usual. Lawyers went in and out, conversed with the detainees, argued with the prosecution, gave the family receipts for fines, the interpreter did not interpret and the judge spoke to the typist over the heads of waiting lawyers, so we could barely hear what he was saying.
It all reflected contempt for the lives, the time and the money of the boys sitting in the dock, and sadly, we don’t have the names and ID numbers, which are essential for reporting.
Ali Muhammad Abed Al Fatah was accused of throwing a rock.
The accusation is based on photos taken during the confrontation with the army. The judge perused the photos, then looked at the accused sitting not far from him and said that the photos were blurry and he could not be sure that the man in the picture is the one in court. Thus, he ordered him released on 2500 shekel bail. The prosecution objected, and the judge postponed the execution of the order by 28 hours.