Avichai Mandelblit
Avichai Mandelblit Photo by Hadas Parush/FLASH90

Fifty attorneys have signed a petition calling on Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to reject a request by anarchist activists Kobi Snitz, Ilan Shalif, and Yonatan Pollak to stay the proceedings against them in a complaint filed by ‘Ad Kan.’ The complaint accuses the anarchists of participating in violent protests where IDF soldiers were harmed.

The current petition and the signatures of 50 attorneys, was in response to another petition by other legal officials who asked that the AG stay the proceedings against the anarchists. The previous petition was based on an article by Former Attorney General Michael Ben Yair, who argued that the Attorney General should issue a stay of proceedings against the anarchists in order to end the current complaint and prevent similar future complaints.

In his article, Ben Yair went further, saying that if the AG fails to stay the proceedings, the Supreme Court should order the AG to “do the right thing- namely, stop the proceedings in this complaint.”

In contrast, the current petition filed by attorneys who oppose the stay of proceedings, argued that the goal of the attorneys in the prior petition was to “apply political pressure on the AG to stop the anarchists from being brought to justice and that ‘Ad Kan’ is not ‘misusing’ the law in any way.”

Furthermore, the current petition notes that one of the defendants, Yonatan Pollak, would also benefit from a stay of proceedings despite his continued refusal to attend the hearings regarding this matter. Pollak even published an op-ed entitled “I will not go,” where he admits to being aware of the proceedings against him, but explains that he has no intention of attending the proceedings since the courts are ‘illegitimate.’

At the end of his op-ed, Pollak details how he has previously violated the law and how he intends to continue to do so. “Just as we currently, in violation of the law, are attempting to stop the tractors that build new settlements… so too must we stop cooperating with the Israeli apartheid in all matters… I will not go.” At the most recent hearing, Judge Dov Pollok (no relation) signed a warrant for the police to compel Pollak’s attendance at future hearings.

“It is inconceivable that a defendant who declares openly that they will not attend hearings, will suddenly ‘benefit’ from a stay of proceedings by the AG. The AG should only take such actions under very special circumstances,” said the attorneys in the current petition.

Towards the end of the petition, the attorneys wrote that they “oppose those who harm IDF soldiers and security officers while cynically taking advantage of the legal system to protect them in their actions. We call on the AG to reject the petition filed by ‘Anarchists against the Wall’ relating to a complaint accusing them of harming IDF soldiers. Granting a stay of proceedings would reward the defendants, who according to the complaint regularly participate in violent riots against security forces.”

According to Ad Kan, Snitz and Pollak are central activists in organizing violent riots against IDF soldiers in the village of Kadum and that they have continued in their activities even after the complaint was filed.

The two activists allegedly participated in over 10 violent riots over the past few months since the complaint was filed. Both were filmed carrying tires that were then set on fire and rolled by the rioters towards IDF soldiers. In one recording, Pollak himself was seen rolling a large tire. Moreover, just a week and a half ago, Pollak participated in a riot at a farm in the Jordan Valley.

Over the past few years, during riots on Fridays held near various villages in Judea and Samaria, over 150 soldiers have been injured.

Gilad Ach, Director of ‘Ad Kan’, said “We call for an end to attacks on IDF soldiers and we were shocked at how various legal officials openly supported anarchists who attack IDF soldiers weekly. We call on the AG not to grant the request of the anarchists to stay the proceedings and not to reward individuals who harm IDF soldiers and refuse to recognize Israeli courts.”

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