Father defies 'undemocratic' order to send off son

Parents protest against unexplained orders for 15-year-old to leave his home.

Hillel Fendel,

Giving out administrative detention (file)
Giving out administrative detention (file)

A 15-year-old boy from the Jewish town of Yitzhar in Shomron (Samaria) has been ordered to leave his parents' home and live in an isolated farm in southern Israel. His family says he's not going anywhere.

The saga began early this month when the minor received two administrative orders: one banning him from entering anywhere in Judea and Samaria for six months, and one ordering him to remain under overnight house arrest at his grandparents' home in central Israel for three months. The orders originated in the IDF Central Command, as Yesha (Judea and Samaria) is under IDF military rule.

No explanation was provided for the orders, other than a general "suspicion of violence against" local Arabs.

Following an appeal by the Honenu legal defense organization and a letter to Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, the minor was allowed to remain at home pending a court hearing. Last week, however, the order was reissued and the boy was ordered to leave his home. He did not do so, for his father explained that the grandparents' home was not a relevant option and that he simply had no place to go.

On Thursday, the Central Command informed the minor that he must relocate to the south, where he will receive a "bed, food, and sanitary conditions as required." Again, the father responded by saying that his son is going nowhere.

The family says it does not know the people in the farm, and that no one has contacted them about the farm or the conditions there. It is not even clear whether the people at the farm have agreed to take him in, or whether they may do so against the wishes of his parents.

"The nerve and patronizing arrogance of the Jewish Section of the Shabak has broken new records," the father said. "To take a 15-year-old boy who has done nothing, and to throw him to an unknown address without coordination with the family – this is what is done in a democratic country? In the 50's they kidnapped Yemenite children in secret, and now they try to take children from their parents for re-education in broad daylight. The natural place for my son is at home, and it is unacceptable that because of some secret material that we have no idea what it contains, the boy is forced to leave his home."

Attorney Chai Haber of Honenu, who is representing the minor, has already informed the Central Command that the order is unacceptable.

Earlier this week, the Council for Children's Welfare directed a request to the head of the Central Command to reassess the situation In light of the "possible ramifications on the minor's long-term and short-term welfare."