Three left-wing activists were awarded NIS 15,000 (roughly $4,000) in damages Sunday, in a settlement reached with the police over a 2008 case.
The three, who are volunteers with the Yesh Din – Volunteers for Human Rights group, filed a civil damages lawsuit against the Israel Police, arguing that they were illegally detained for six hours by the Hebron Police, when they visited the city four years ago.
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The suit, which alleged "false imprisonment," said that the three – who were visiting the West Bank city to depose a Palestinian shepherd who was allegedly assaulted by settlers – were detained for no other reason but their affiliation with Yesh Din.
The organization claimed that the arrest "Was apparently part of the Hebron Police's undeclared policy not to allow human rights activists or peace activists' presence in their sector."
The police argued that the three were in violation of a restricted military zone order.
According to the police, the three refused to leave the area when officers requested them to do so and were detained for creating a "public disturbance."
The plaintiffs claimed that they were "Held for no reason and were humiliated while in police custody… Their persons were searched for no reason and they were not even given water, causing one of them to eventually dehydrate."
The three initially sued the police for NIS 100,000 ($26,500), saying the officers infringed on their freedom of movement and freedom of speech, as well as falsely imprisoned them.
The Jerusalem Magistrate's Court ratified the settlement, reached through arbitration, awarding each of the activists NIS 5,000 ($1,300).
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