'Supreme Court ruling should outrage everyone'

Attorney of administrative detainee Meir Ettinger slams Prison Services, court for rejecting request to attend son's brit.

Shimon Cohen ,

Ariel Atari ahead of the Supreme Court hearing
Ariel Atari ahead of the Supreme Court hearing
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a petition by Meir Ettinger - who has been held without trial on administrative detention for eight months since last August 3 - asking that he be allowed to attend his firstborn son's brit milah (circumcision).

Due to the decision Ettinger was not present at the brit, in which his son's name was announced as Netzah Binyamin.

Attorney Ariel Atari, who represented Ettinger in court, spoke to Arutz Sheva about the Supreme Court decision and said, "every thinking person should be outraged."

Referencing the arguments raised during the hearing, Atari said that the Israel Prison Services (IPS) made the outrageous claim that it was unable to organize for the brit today as long as it was held outside the prison walls.

"It is infuriating because the IPS knew about the brit for the last eight days. We turned to them with a request immediately after the birth, and the IPS could have organized and anticipated that the court would accept the request," Atari told Arutz Sheva.

Atari said that the IPS claims that it could not prepare on such short notice despite the early request testifies to how there are those in the IPS who reason the court is in their pocket, or else choose to have contempt for the court and human rights.

The IPS also claimed in court that there were "concerns" that nationalists present at the brit would demonstrate at the site in some form or another.

According to Ettinger's attorney, the claim is absolutely frightening as it slanders nationalists as criminals due to concerns over a demonstration.

"It doesn't hold water," he emphasized, dismissing the claims.

When asked if there was precedent for administrative detainees such as Ettinger to be allowed out for family events, he noted that there were plenty of examples, citing among others Ettinger's grandfather former MK Rabbi Meir Kahane, who "was in administrative arrest and had a grandson born, and he was allowed to go out for the brit."

He also pointed out that while the IPS proposed the brit be conducted in prison with only 15 guests, common protocol has been to allow even convicted prisoners for charges as serious as murder to leave jail temporarily under guard to attend family events, and such precedents abound.

According to the lawyer, Ettinger is being subjected to blatant discrimination as apparently the law only applies to other prisoners and not to him.