Minister without Portfolio Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud) has requested declassification of testimony concerning the fate of Yemenite children allegedly kidnapped during the 1950’s, Ynet reported on Thursday.
Hanegbi, who has been tasked with heading a probe to put the matter to rest after decades of allegations and denials, has asked the heads of the Shin Bet and Mossad to allow access to the testimony of former Shin Bet chief Amos Manor. Manor headed the security agency from 1953 to 1963.
Hanegbi reportedly believes that the security establishment has no right to keep the material under wraps, and will in any case recommend declassification to the government, but he prefers to have their cooperation.
He is also expected to recommend that a special webpage be set up where the entirety of the testimony can be read by the public.
Hanegbi visited the State Archives with Archivist Dr. Yaakov Lezubik, director of the Ministry of Justice’s Freedom of Information Unit Rivkie Dvash, and legal counsel to the State Archives Naomi Aldouby.
Hundreds of containers containing more than a million and a half sheets of testimonies, transcripts, documents, minutes, and data from hospitals, the Ministry of the Interior, a burial society, the Ministry of Health, and other sources were sent on Hanegbi’s instructions for digital scanning so they can be centralized on a website open to the public.