Rehovot district police on Monday night arrested Shiloh Ben-Shai, a Jewish youth who has been distanced from Judea and Samaria, claiming that he breached an administrative order against him – although the IDF admitted the order was impossible to fulfill.
Ben-Shai, who was arrested in Yad Binyamin located in coastal Israel to the east of Ashdod, was given the order a month-and-a-half ago, but according to it he was to be confined to night-time house arrest in an apartment that does not belong to him.
After the youth received the administrative order, Attorney Menashe Yado of the Honenu legal aid organization sent a letter to the office of IDF Homefront Commander Yoel Strick who signed off on the order, clarifying that the order cannot be upheld since the apartment does not belong to the youth.
Ben-Shai in the past lived in the apartment in a rental situation, but currently has no access to the apartment, and therefore Yado requested that the order be corrected.
The Homefront Command legal adviser confirmed in a conversation with the attorney and in writing that he received Yado's letter, and informed the lawyer that the IDF is aware of the problem and is taking steps to deal with the issue.
However, since then not a single solution has been presented by the Homefront Command, and in the meantime the police decided on Monday night to arrest the youth as he slept at the apartment of a friend.
According to the order Ben-Shai has been forbidden from staying at his parents' home in Kiryat Arba, Judea, and is forced to sleep in a different place each night with friends.
"A contemptible arrest"
On Tuesday morning the youth was transferred to the Jewish crime division of the Jerusalem police, and police announced they intend to bring him to court.
Honenu harshly criticized the police action.
"This is an illegal and contemptible arrest in opposition to the declarations of the legal adviser of the Homefront Command, according to which the commander will take care of the problem and find a solution," said Yado of Honenu's civilian department.
"For a month-and-a-half the legal advisers of the Homefront Command and Jerusalem police didn't deal with our claims and didn't find a solution to the problem which they recognized, and which cannot be ignored," continued the attorney.
Yado posed: "how do you give someone an order obligating him to stay at an address that isn't his home address? It's completely clear that the order isn't valid, and we specifically declared that Mr. Ben-Shai is not fulfilling it because it cannot be fulfilled."
"Homefront Command asked for time to find a solution, but instead of correcting the situation, the system manipulated its governmental powers to arrest him in opposition to the law."