Ya'alon signs administrative detention decree for far-right Jewish activist

The latest arrest was of Avitar Salonim, who has had a banning order preventing him from traveling to the West Bank and Jerusalem.

August 4, 2015 22:26
2 minute read.
Former defense minister Moshe Yaalon

Former defense minister Moshe Yaalon. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon signed an administrative detention decree on Tuesday evening allowing security forces to detain far right operative Mordechai Ma'ayar for up to six months.

The decree was signed due to Ma'ayar's "involvement in violent activities and terrorist attacks that occurred recently, and his role as part of a Jewish terrorist group," Ya'alon's spokesperson said.

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The decree was signed on the advice of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), an hour after Ma'ayar's arrest.

The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) arrested a second far right figure on Tuesday, a day after arresting far right operative Meir Ettinger on suspicion of being involved in an extremist Jewish organization.

The latest arrest was of Avitar Salonim, who has had a banning order preventing him from traveling to the West Bank and Jerusalem, the Shin Bet said.

Salonim too is suspected of being active in a "violent extremist Jewish organization," the intelligence agency said.

On Monday, a security source said Ettinger is suspected of being part of an “extremist infrastructure,” but declined to say whether the arrest had any direct link to the deadly arson attack on a Palestinian home in the village of Duma last week.

In a blog post published July 30 on the Hakol Heyehudi (Jewish Voice) website responding to the Shin Bet arrest of suspected arsonists behind the June attack on the Church of Loaves and Fishes in the North, Ettinger wrote: “The truth is I don’t know what the Shin Bet wanted me to organize... this impulse of the Shin Bet to create an atmosphere and make up displays as if there is an ‘organization’ that it exposes, explains to us well what the Shin Bet understands so well and is so afraid of... the Shin Bet understands that the activities they chase after... simply grow out of the ground from the most basic and popular understandings that cause people to feel that they need to do something.”

He added: “There is no terrorist organization, but there are lots and lots of Jews, much more than what they think, whose ladder of values is completely different from that of the High Court of Justice or the Shin Bet.”

Administrative detention permits authorities to keep suspects behind bars without formal charges or a trial for up to six months, which can be renewed with a judge's order.

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