Israeli Conscientious Objectors Transferred Due to Support Protest

Israeli army moves two female refuseniks after protesters plan large support rally outside infamous Prison Six.

Conscientious objectors Tamar Alon (left) and Tamar Ze'evi.
Rami Ben Ari

The Israeli army transferred two conscientious objectors after a support rally for this weekend was planned outside the jail they are being held in.

The protest in support of Tamar Alon and Tamar Ze'evi, two 18-year-old refuseniks was planned for Saturday. The rally was slated to take place outside the army's infamous Prison Six, one of two holding facilities where the Israel Defense Forces jails soldiers. However, the two received transfer orders on Thursday and were moved to the army's second military prison – Prison Four in central Israel.

The two received no information as to why they were being transferred, but on Sunday, when they were transferred back to Prison Six, it became clear that it was due to the support rally.

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Israel Defense Forces Military Prison 6, in 2002.
Nir Kafri

Yesh Gvul and Mesarvot, who organized the support rally, followed suit and relocated the event to the new location. "These [two young women] refuse to serve and we support their refusal. We protest their arrests and the attempt to force them to serve an oppression which is contrary to their values," the group said in the updated invitation to the protest.

Both Alon and Ze'evi have been jailed for about a month and a half for their refusal to enlist in the IDF. According to the two, they were told that they would be moved every time a support rally is planned. Mesarvot, an NGO that supports female conscientious objectors, said the frequent transfers are part of an attempt to break their spirts. Tair Kaminer, a former refusenik, was also moved around due to protests in her support.

Following her arrest, Alon told Haaretz that she "is willing to pay the price" for her refusal to serve in the army. "I think it is important that this voice –the voice of those who refuse to serve – be heard, even though [prolonged jail time is] frightening," she said.

The army said in response that "the two detainees refuse to complete their enlistment process and were therefore sentenced to detention in an army prison. Their transfer between different detention basis is routine and based on professional considerations."