Detained American journalist Jared Malsin is leaving Israel and heading back to Prague where his ordeal with the Israeli government began over eight days ago. Based on the update below there are clearly many questions that still need to be answered in this case, but in the meantime here is the latest from Ma’an:
At 11:30am on Tuesday, Tel Aviv District Judge Kobi Vardi called for a hearing into the deportation against Ma’an journalist Jared Malsin. Following the call, Ma’an lawyer Castro Daoud went to the airport holding facility where Jared has been kept for the past week to give him the news.
Daoud left Jared at 2:30pm and filed a motion with Justice Vardi requesting that Jared be able to leave the country and have the hearings proceed in his absence. Since the Israeli Attorney General’s Office insisted Malsin not be present for his hearing, Daoud argued that it was no longer necessary to keep Malsin cooped up in the airport cell.
At 4:30pm staff from the US Embassy in Tel Aviv notified Malsin’s parents in New Hampshire that he would be on the next flight to Prague, even though Justice Vardi had not ruled on Daoud’s motion to let him travel and still pursue the case.
At 7:30pm Daoud received notification from Justice Vardi that he had received a motion signed by Malsin requesting his deportation order be annulled, and that he be allowed to take the next flight back to Prague.
Justice Vardi has closed the case on Malsin’s deportation order one week after it was filed.
Malsin’s parents have been denied phone access to their son, and US consular staff were unable to communicate when the journalist would board a flight.
Ma’an is concerned that there was no lawyer present when Malsin reportedly filed this independent motion, sent from the Israeli Ministry of the Interior and not his legal representative. Ma’an is equally concerned at the inability of Malsin’s parents or girlfriend to reach him to communicate the situation or get clarification from Malsin as to what happened between 2:30 and 4:30pm on Tuesday.