Justice Ministry mulls releasing ‘Prisoner X’ dossier

Justice Ministry mulls releasing ‘Prisoner X’ dossier

After gag order was partially lifted on Wednesday, details of Zygier's death in prison may be released in full

Yifa Yaakov is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Ben Zygier's Australian passport (photo credit: screen capture Channel 10)
Ben Zygier's Australian passport (photo credit: screen capture Channel 10)

The Justice Ministry is mulling the release of the file concerning the death of Ben Zygier, who committed suicide in prison two years ago, Israeli media reported Saturday night.

Zygier, initially called “Prisoner X” in media reports, was held in a solitary high-security cell in Ramle’s Ayalon Prison for eight or nine months before committing suicide on December 15, 2010, reportedly in his cell bathroom. The cell was previously occupied by Yigal Amir, who shot and killed former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995.

There were no cameras in the bathroom, which explained the lack of video evidence for the suicide, despite the fact that Zygier was reportedly under suicide watch and held in a high-tech cell in 24-hour surveillance, according to a report on Channel 2.

The Justice Ministry was set to hold a session Sunday to discuss the matter and to decide whether or not the gag order on the story should be partially lifted.

Earlier Saturday, Strategic Affairs Minister and Vice Premier Moshe Ya’alon said Zygier’s incarceration was made necessary by Israel’s “unique” security situation.

On Wednesday, a court order lifted parts of gag orders on the case dating to March 2010 and confirmed in writing that an Israeli man who held dual citizenship in an undisclosed country died in custody in 2010.

read more: