In a nearly unprecedented move, the IDF Appeals Court has canceled a restraining order against a Jewish resident of the Samaria – who had already been banned from entering Judea and Samaria for a year. The now-nullified order would have kept him out of his home for yet another three months.
Presiding Judge Brig.-Gen. Netanel Benisho accepted the defense as presented by attorney Menashe Yado of the Honenu organization. Honenu provides legal representation to Jews convicted of nationalist and Land of Israel crimes, protests, and the like.
In the case at hand, Judge Benisho ruled that the information presented to him shows that the defendant does not believe in ideological violence, and that he was chiefly involved in legitimate protest activities. Though the defendant was involved in several violent incidents in the past, the judge acknowledged, these were not frequent, and certainly do not justify an administrative restraining order against him.
Attorney Yado maintained that the main reason his client was served with a distancing order was because of the protests he organized – most of them with police permission - outside the homes of public figures. One of the people whose home was a frequent site of these protests was IDF Commander Roni Numa – who signed the order against the defendant.
Honenu says that the ruling is "historic," in that the last time an administrative order against a Jew was court-nullified was 11 years ago. Honenu is a private organization dependent on donations for its activities in defense of many residents of Judea and Samaria.
Judge Benisho also stated that even if certain protest actions are potentially liable to become violent, this is a far cry from purposeful violence perpetrated as part of a general ideology.
Attorney Yado said that the ruling "reveals how the security organs take advantage of the secrecy offered them by administrative orders to illegally stop legitimate public protest by residents of Judea and Samaria. The court reminded them today that the army is not above the law, and that it cannot simply cite 'security considerations' in order to issue draconian orders against residents."