Interview
Terrorist to testify against soldiers in court

Military court judge keeps soldiers in jail on claims of terrorists that they struck them, lawyer warns state is destroying IDF morale.

Benny Tucker,

(Illustration)
(Illustration)
Flash 90

Military Petitions Court Judge Brig. Gen. Doron Peles rejected a petition submitted on behalf of two out of four Netzah Yehuda battalion combat soldiers accused of hitting two terrorists, ruling that they are to remain in detention until the end of legal proceedings against them.

The judge ruled that the soldiers were "dangerous" given the accusations by the terrorists that they struck them.

One terrorist who was struck is to arrive in court next week to testify against the IDF soldiers.

Attorney Chai Haber, who represents the combat soldiers for the Honenu legal aid organization, told Arutz Sheva that allowing the terrorist to testify against the soldiers will sharply harm morale.

"This is a surprising decision; outstanding combat soldiers who conducted their operation are classified as 'dangerous.' When a terrorist doesn't listen to orders and refuses to walk, it is permissible to use a certain amount of force," he said, referencing details of the case.

"Unfortunately the soldiers are being punished, and this will seriously harm the morale of all the combat soldiers."

Haber said the state is itself harming the motivation of the soldiers, noting, "they are constantly in the friction points with a hostile population and with terrorists, and the moment some leftist says something, they immediately arrest them and open a criminal record against them. The state of Israel sent them (the terrorists - ed.), and now they're turning them into criminals."

"There's no disagreement that the soldiers are not dangerous and it was possible to be satisfied, if at all, with releasing them to detention in their unit, but for an unclear reason that certainly doesn't match the decision of the courts, it was decided to leave them in detention, and that's a shame."

"I hope that this step won't cause a drop in motivation and a sowing of fear among the soldiers who from now on will be even more afraid to carry out their roles in the war against the Arab enemy," concluded Haber.

In the case of one of the terrorists, it was agreed by all sides that he hit his own head into a wall to frame the soldiers, and the soldiers argue they only hit him when he refused to walk back from the bathroom to where he was being held.

The other terrorist complained that after being arrested on suspicions of possessing a weapon and involvement in terror attacks, several soldiers passed him by and kicked and slapped him several times.

Reportedly, the IDF Criminal Investigation Division (CID) searched for "right-wing statements" on the cell phones of the soldiers, as part of its attempts to incriminate them with assaulting the terrorists.




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