23-year-old tries to cross Gaza border

Indictment filed against Rehovot resident caught by IDF soldiers before he was able to cross border into Gaza.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Gaza border (illustration)
Gaza border (illustration)
Tomer Neuberg/Flash 90

An indictment was filed on Thursday against a 23-year-old man from Rehovot, who is accused of having tried on Wednesday to cross the border into Gaza.

He was caught by security forces just 30 meters from the fence, near Moshav Netiv Haasara. Two kitchen knives, clothing and cash were found in his possession.

Upon being caught, the man said that he did not intend to actually cross the border, but had hoped the IDF soldiers stationed along the border fence would shoot him.

The man was accused of attempting to leave the country illegally and possessing a knife.

"The defendant imposed a heavy and unnecessary burden on the security forces in charge of security of the state," said the request for his remand. His detention was extended for ten days on Thursday and he was sent for psychiatric evaluation.

His attorney, Ofra Siboni, said on Thursday, "There is no place to hold my client in custody behind bars. This is a man who is in a difficult mental condition and he did not try to harm state security."

Two Israelis who entered Gaza in recent years and are believed to be held by Hamas are suffering from mental illness. One of them is Avraham “Avera” Mengistu, an Ethiopian Jew who was deeply depressed when he wandered unarmed across the border to Gaza in 2014.

Hisham al-Sayed, a Bedouin man known to be mentally ill, also crossed the border into Gaza and is believed to be held by Hamas.