Father of Bat Ayin Terror Victim, 7, Gets Prison Furlough to Visit Son

Ofer Gamliel, father of injured seven-year-old Yair, is imprisoned for planning to attack a Jerusalem Arab girls' school.

The jailed father of a 7-year-old boy wounded by an axe-wielding Palestinian in the West Bank settlement of Bat Ayin on Thursday has been granted temporary leave to visit his son in hospital.

Ofer Gamliel, who is serving a 15 year sentence for his involvement in a Jewish militant underground during the second Intifada, was allowed Friday to visit his son Yair who was moderately injured in the attack a day earlier.

On Thursday, Gamliel refused Prison Service's offer to visit his son in the company of guards, unshackled and wearing inmate's clothing.He demanded instead to be granted temporary furlough and to wear the jalabiya - traditional Arab garb that he wears within prison walls.

Initially, prison officials initially made it clear that Gamliel would not be allowed to leave the premises in the jalabiya and the man decided to stay in prison rather than visit his son.

Gamliel and Prison Services finally struck a compromise that he could wear the garb so long as he had it tucked in his pants and maintained a dignified appearance.

Ofer Gamliel's brother, Meir Avihu Gamliel, was outraged by the Prison Service's insistence, dubbing it "power struggles."

"Ofer was approved for leave immediately after the attack, since he should be there by his child's side," Gamliel said. "The Shin Bet did not oppose to the visit. Only later did the prison service say they changed their minds and disallowed his leave, relegating him to just a visit while accompanied by prison guards, and with shackled hands."

"Ofer agreed to leave the prison under the prison service's conditions, but then, just as he was leaving, the security officer told him that he could not go out wearing the Jellabiya he wears every day," he added.

Earlier Friday morning, Yair Gamliel was operated on in Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem. He was then transferred to the hospital's pediatric intensive care unit, fully conscience.

Ofer Gamliel is currently serving a prison sentence for his involvement in the 'Bat Ayin Underground,' which planned an attack several years ago at a girls' school in the A-Tor neighborhood in East Jerusalem.

The 'Bat Ayin Underground' was active in the West Bank and East Jerusalem during the early years of the Second Intifada.

In April 2002, police arrested Shlomo Dvir, Yarden Morag and Ofer Gamliel, 'Bat Ayin underground' members, who were later convicted of attempting to place an explosive device near the East Jerusalem school.

Morag and Gamliel were sentenced to 15 years each, while Dvir was sentenced to 12 years. Additional Bat Ayin residents were arrested and convicted in connection to the attempted attack.

Gamliel, 47, was a carpenter and os father of seven children.

Six months ago, he went on a hunger strike to protest the conditions in jail.

Last October, Interior Minister Eli Yishai asked President Shimon Peres to intervene on behalf of Gamliel and his associates to improve the conditions of their imprisonment.