A lieutenant and three enlisted men, all army reservists, were court martialed last month for refusing to obey orders to prevent illegal settlers from crossing into the West Bank, it was learned here today. The incident was first revealed by Premier Yitzhak Rabin last week at a meeting of the Mapam secretariat. But the general public was not informed, apparently to avoid a further heating of emotions over the controversial settlement issue. The four reservists were sentenced by a military court to 21-day prison terms which were suspended. They were placed on probation for one year.
The men have since returned to civilian life following the demobilization of their reserve unit. They had been ordered on the last day of the Succot holiday to man a roadblock on the Hebron-Jerusalem road to keep would-be settlers from the religious community of Kiryat Arabs from entering the West Bank. But the men refused to obey the order and told their superior that they would not participate in any action against settlers. As a result, they were arrested, held in detention for one day and released to await trial.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.