Israel Police Raid Yeshiva in West Bank Settlement, Arrest Two Students

Minor arrested for participating violence during Amona evacuation, and another man was arrested for attacking police during the raid.

Moti Milrod

Israeli police raided the Od Yosef Chai yeshiva in the West Bank settlement of Yitzhar and arrested two students on Tuesday night, one a minor suspected of vandalism. The yeshiva is considered to harbor some of the most extreme settlers in the West Bank.

The 14-year-old was arrested for allegedly causing property damage during the evacuation of the illegal outpost of Amona last month.  He was taken for questioning by the Judea and Samaria District police.

The other suspect, legally an adult, is suspected of attacking a police officer during the arrest of the minor. He was arrested for assaulting a police officer.

During the evacuation of Amona, young people threw rocks at security forces, and later blockaded themselves inside the homes. But most of the violence took place when they blockaded themselves inside the synagogue, which was the last building to be evacuated in Amona. The confrontation with the police, which was violent in part, lasted hours.

During the raid on the yeshiva, rocks were thrown at the police and at the at Border Police officers providing backup security during the raid.

The yeshiva students blocked police vehicles and threw rocks at them in an attempt to prevent them from leaving Yitzhar, which is when the second person allegedly attacked a police officer and was arrested.

Beyond the two students who were arrested, another young man was barred from entering the West Bank for three months, stated Honenu, an organization self-described as providing legal assistance to “soldiers and civilians who find themselves in legal entanglements due to defending themselves against Arab aggression, or due to their love for Israel.”

Honenu said the two people arrested were released after questioning with conditions limiting their activities. "We severely condemn the police raid on educational institutions in the dark of night," said Honenu.  "This is not a raid because of serious [crimes] and it gives the impression the police relate to educational institutions in the Jewish sector a harsh manner that it would not dare to use with Arab children," said the group.

The Od Yosef Chai yeshiva said the Jewish department of the Shin Bet [security service] continues to work hard to alienate good young men from the establishment, and cause them to realize that the present establishment persecutes them only because of the way they look and their beliefs.