Top Officer Suspended After Security Device Stolen

YERUSHALAYIM -
An IDF soldier works on a computer in Katzrin, Golan Heights. (Serge Attal/Flash90, file)

A top IDF officer has been suspended for losing sensitive equipment. The equipment, including a special encoded cell phone for use in military emergencies, was taken from the officer’s car. Also taken were top-secret documents. After a hearing last week, IDF Northern Command General Aviv Kochavi suspended the officer for seven days. However, top brass is considering forcing the officer to retire altogether, sources in the army said.

Military police have opened an investigation into the theft. The officer left the equipment and documents in his vehicle for a short time, and returned to find that it had been broken into, with the items taken. The officer immediately informed his superiors, officials said, but the investigation will focus on all possibilities, including negligence and collusion, they added.

Overnight Sunday, security officials said they arrested 13 wanted security suspects in other areas in Yehudah and Shomron. The suspects were wanted for participating in rioting and throwing stones and firebombs that endangered Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers. Several of the suspects were also charged with belonging to Hamas. All were being questioned on their activities by security forces.