RAMALLAH, October 13 (JMCC) - Magda Abu Rahme, the wife of detained Bilin
community organizer Abdullah Abu Rahme, speaks of her relief after his sentencing this week to one year in prison.
This was a difficult period, she told JMCC.org. We lived on the edge of our nerves. They dragged their feet and postponed this farce of a trial so much just to weaken the morale of Abdullah.
Abu Rahme says that the family was expecting a heavier sentence. The prosecution asked for a jail term of two years. And still she fears that Abdullah's sentencing could be relived if the military court accepts further arguments from the prosecution.
Abu Rahme was originally charged with incitement, organizing and participating in illegal demonstrations, breaking the law, throwing stones and possession of weapons.
His wife believes that young witnesses were coerced into testifying that Abdullah threw stones at the Israeli army. But in cross-examination, the witnesses' testimonies were proven unreliable and ultimately dropped. Ultimately, the charges of incitement and participating in demonstrations were the charges on which Abu Rahme was sentenced.
The details of this trial was like watching a horror film, in that every minute we were stunned, she recalls.
Magda then reads a statement from her husband made after the sentencing. This verdict is unjust, and this trial is unfair, he says. They seek to punish people who are struggling to gain their rights. We are an occupied people with the right to defend our rights as human beings and our stolen land. They must leave our land.
Abdullah Abu Rahme was arrested in October 2009. He has been integral to protests against the Wall
has built through the West Bank
village of Bilin, confiscating half of the village's lands. While the Israeli courts have ruled that the Wall must be rerouted, returning half that land, the decision has yet to be implemented.