Daily Israel Report

Detention Prisoner´s Wife´s Three Questions

Naomi Ofan, whose husband was incarcerated last week for what will apparently be nearly five months of administrative detention, asked three questions this morning of the Knesset Law Committee:
First Publish: 5/18/2005, 8:30 AM / Last Update: 5/17/2005, 5:05 PM

"First of all, if he is under suspicion, then why don't they put him on trial? How can they just keep him in prison without even telling him the nature of the accusations against him? It's simply political - as is evidenced by the fact that they plan to release him in September, after the disengagement; will he cease to be a danger to the public after the summer?"

Her second question:
"On Sunday, the judge in the Be'er Sheva court decided that the GSS (General Security Service) must open the documents against my husband, and formulate a summary of the main points [of the charges against him]. The judge even said, 'If you don't do it, I'll do it.' A half-hour later, after GSS agents talked to him secretly in his chambers - we were not permitted to enter and we have no idea what happened there - he came out and changed his mind. This must be investigated! It cannot be that a Chief Court Justice changes things this way."

"And third," she said, "how am I supposed to choose which of my four children - aged 8 and down - can't see their father? Yesterday, I was told we could come for a visit, so we dressed up all nice, etc., and then I received a phone call from the prison, telling me the rules: only three people, only a half-hour, he'll be behind bars, etc. What, our 1-year-old baby can't see or touch his father?! What is this, Russia?! Are we monkeys in a zoo?"

Committee Chairman Michael Eitan responded that he would work to improve the jail conditions for the prisoner - Neriah Ofan - in accordance with her third question. His other reactions were not as pleasing to Naomi, however.

In response to her second question, Eitan said that judges are allowed to change their minds.

Responding to her first question, MK Eitan said, "This is the law, and I don't think that yourself would want to change it," because that would prevent the GSS from properly interrogating suspected Arab terrorists.

Mrs. Ofan told Arutz-7 today that she was told that her husband's conditions in prison would improve in the coming days, and that he would be moved to a more comfortable wing in the Shikmah Prison near Ashkelon. Residents of Yitzhar, the Ofan families lives close to a two-hour drive from the prison.

"The GSS intimated that he has been planning terrorism for four years," Naomi said, "but this it totally ridiculous. It's obvious that they were after him because of his work in getting soldiers to sign their refusal to fulfill the immoral disengagement orders. They simply want to scare the right-wing."