The Jerusalem Post

Vet’s self-immolation leads to protests


Dozens of Israelis arrived at the Defense Ministry’s rehabilita­tion division in Petah Tikva on Wednesday morning to stand for the siren, as a tribute to disabled IDF veteran Itzik Saidian.

Saidian set himself on fire on Monday across from the ministry’s rehabilita­tion department, and is currently in critical condition at

Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer.

“The Defense Ministry is praying for the well-being of disabled IDF veteran Itzik Saidian, and is standing by his family at the hospital during these difficult moments,” the ministry said.

“This is a very severe incident, which shocks everybody. Itzik, a disabled IDF veteran treated by the

Defense Ministry, experience­d distress that led him to a desperate, terrible act.”

In addition to those standing outside the rehabilita­tion division on Wednesday morning, another demonstrat­ion was organized near the ministry’s office in Tel Aviv by the IDF Disabled Veterans Organizati­on.

The organizati­on demanded changes in the Defense Ministry’s rehabilita­tion program, claiming it “provides disabled veterans with poor treatment and steals their rights,” said Idan Kleiman, head of the organizati­on. The program “is in a state of complete collapse, both in its function and value ... The results are clear to everyone now. It’s time for a real revolution and a comprehens­ive reform of the Disability Rehabilita­tion Division!”

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