The Petah Tikva District Court on Thursday rejected an appeal filed by Yigal Amir, murderer of former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Amir petitioned the court to allow him to pray together with more than one prisoner.
Justice Avraham Tal ruled that the Prison Service is allowed to prevent him from doing so, but called on the Prison Service to make an extra effort in locating a place that would allow Amir to pray with other inmates subject to the security restrictions.
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Till now the State allowed Amir to meet with another inmate three times a week for one hour, each time with a different inmate who was among the general population at the prison, in order to study Torah together. In the petition, Amir asked to meet with three prisoners together as well as to be allowed to pray in a minyan (quorum of 10 adult Jews required for communal prayers).
Attorney Oded Keller, who was representing the State on behalf of the central district prosecutor's office, was opposed to the request, stating that Amir was in solitary confinement and so, the process would be a complex one in addition the fact that the Shin Bet object to his praying in a group.
Justice Tal heard the State's arguments, received clarifications from the deputy commander of the Rimonim prison, and decided to reject Amir's petition. He further ruled that the prison continue to allow Amir his three weekly one hour meetings, each time with one prisoner.
According to Tal: "The Prison Service's decision to refrain from integrating other prisoners (with Amir) is not an unreasonable one."
Moreover, Tal ruled that Amir be allowed to bring books deemed to be appropriate by the prison rabbi to the meetings.
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