Protesters Demand an End to Distancing Orders

Impromptu protest forms against continued imprisonment of Boaz Albert outside house of General of Central Command.

Tova Dvorin ,

Nitzan Alon
Nitzan Alon
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Tens of protestors showed up unexpectedly tonight (Wednesday) outside of the home of Nitzan Alon, General of Central Command, and demonstrated against his controversial administrative decisions. 

The impromptu protest lasted a long time, as demonstrators chanted, sang, and handed out fliers protesting the continued detention of Boaz Albert, a Jewish resident of Judea and Samaria who was electrified with a taser two months ago by officials and dragged to prison without explanation. Police eventually arrived at the scene, arrested the protestors and confiscated their vehicles. 

"Nitzan Alon needs to understand that protests will continue until the truth comes to light and until his administrative policies cease," one of the protestors stated. "Alon stops people for questioning, people who are doubtful to have committed any crimes, at random and does not investigate matters before arresting them. He then prevents them from returning home without supervision." he claimed. "This is not a democracy; this is a totalitarian regime under one man's control, in the hands of a military man with dishonest motives."

In recent years, waves of criticism have erupted against IDF policies which allow for lengthy detentions without precedent, and are at the mercy of the General of the Central Command alone, without checks and balances. These policies, which were originally for emergency situations, have become commonplace in Judea and Samaria, to the persistent chagrin of human rights organizations. 

Boaz Albert was tasered and then removed from his home two months ago on Alon's orders after violating several bans on entering his Yitzhar home. The bans, which were given without any explanation, had distanced him from his livelihood, his wife, and his six children.

In the interim, Albert has been detained without the possibility of release; so far, he has only been offered the alternative of house arrest outside of his home community of Yitzhar. Albert still has no idea why he is still in prison or why the bans existed to begin with.  

The incident has led to a ban on taser use, but no freedom for Albert.

Attorney Naftali Warzberger, from the Honenu ("pardoned") organization for prisoner rights, represented the protesters who were arrested tonight. "Nitzan Alon is used in Judea and Samaria as a representative of the sovereign government, not as a [limited,] normal IDF officer. This gives him the power to issue arbitrary administrative orders."

He continued: "In this case, democracy has received two blows: first, when this power was abused against its own citizens; and second, when they have been denied the right to fair protest."