Yitzhak Zweig, a known activist in various Jewish groups advocating free access to Temple Mount for Jews was awarded NIS 7,000 (roughly $1,800) Wednesday after the court ruled that he was unjustly denied access to the area for five months.
The police decided to bar Zweig from the area over three incidents – taking place between 2006 and 2010 – in which he did not follow security forces' directives.
- 'Police harassing Jews on Temple Mount'
- Temple Mount (not) in our hands
- Arabs stone police on Temple Mount
According to the police, Zweig, an archeologist who holds guided tours of Jerusalem and Temple Mount, was allowed to continue visiting the compound but after his disorderly incident in 2010, he was made to sign a written agreement to follow security forces' orders.
Despite the deal, his access to the area was denied.
Zweig told the court that he contacted several police officials in search of an explanation, but to no avail.
After five months he filed a damages suit against the police, citing their action was infringing on his livelihood.
The case was eventually heard before the Beit Shemesh Magistrate's Court, where Zweig claimed the decision to bar him from Temple Mount was arbitrary and illegal.
The police argued that he posed a danger to public order, given both his past behavior and the sensitive security situation in Temple Mount.
The court ruled that the police decision was "disproportionate and inconsistent," adding that, "The police's conduct in this matter, and especially the fact that their position changed drastically, evokes several questions as to its merit."
Zweig told Ynet that he hoped that "The ruling will curb the police's arbitrary conduct when it comes to Jews visiting the site… The limitations imposed on such visits are grossly infringing on basic rights and the freedom of movement."
- Receive Ynetnews updates
directly to your desktop