Three residents of the Gush Etzion community of Bat Ayin, youths aged 12-13 were detained on Sunday 8 Elul 5772 on suspicion of involvement with the firebomb incident which occurred approximately a week and a half ago, Honenu reports.
On Thursday, August 16 a fire bomb was thrown at an Arab taxi on Route 60 in Gush Etzion between Kfar Etzion and several hilltop communities. The taxi caught fire and went up in flames. The injured passengers were evacuated to a hospital with at least one in serious condition.
One of the three youths was detained in his home in Bat Ayin and the other two were detained in Jerusalem at the yeshiva at which they study. The three detainees were taken to the Central Unit of Yehuda and Shomron Police Station in Maale Adumim where they were interrogated concerning their involvement with the fire bomb incident.
The night following the firebomb incident ISA (Israel Security Agency – Shin Bet) agents and Yassam police forces raided the homes of several youths residing in Bat Ayin and spoke to them, warning them on the subject of fire bombs and other illegal activities. No-one was detained that night.
Last week an additional youth, also a resident of Bat Ayin was detained. His parents were told that he was detained on suspicion of involvement with the firebomb incident however the police deny that that was the reason for his detention. The youth himself said that he was interrogated on that incident. The youth was held for several hours of interrogation and then unconditionally released.
Jewish residents of the Gush Etzion region note that in the area in which the fire bomb was thrown rocks are frequently thrown at Jewish cars and numerous incidents of fire bombs thrown at Jewish cars have occurred. “The determination that Jews threw the fire bomb is hasty and most irresponsible,” say residents of the area.
The three detainees were remanded in the Jerusalem Magistrate Court. Honenu attorney David HaLevi is representing the youths.
Honenu’s response: “During the past few months we have been witness to dozens of detentions and interrogations which though they made big headlines did not result in arrests. In the course of many of the detentions and interrogations the rights of the detainees, many of whom were minors, were violated. We hope that the police will be able this time to maintain the rights of detainees, especially considering the fact that they are young minors, and estimate that also this time the incidents will conclude with no arrests.”
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)