RAMALLAH, Nov 24 (JMCC) - An Israeli military court ordered Bilin
protest organizer Abdullah Abu Rahmah to remain in detention despite his having served all of his one-year jail sentence, reports CNN.
Abu Rahmah was convicted of incitement for organizing weekly demonstrations in the West Bank village of Bil'in against what Israel calls its security barrier and Palestinians call the apartheid separation wall. Israel says the barrier is needed for security, Palestinians say it is a land grab which cuts through village farmlands. The protests started five years ago.
The Popular Struggle Coordination Committee, the group to which Abu Rahmah belongs to said in a statement, The decision contradicts the jurisprudence of the Israeli Supreme Court on the issue, instructing that a prisoner should only be kept under arrest after his term was over in the most extraordinary of cases.
Gaby Lasky, Abu Rahmah's lawyer told CNN, I do believe it is a political decision... intended to help Israel with its occupation of Palestinian territory.
An Israeli military court in October sentenced Abu Rahmah, 39, to a year in prison for incitement and organizing illegal demonstrations amid criticism from the European Union and human rights organizations that the conviction was politically motivated. He had already been in prison for ten months and was due to be released Thursday.
Speaking in October before his sentencing, Abu Rahmah rejected the Israeli charges against him. We want to continue our struggle. We want to continue to have our rights until we will have freedom and independence to remove the wall, to remove the settlements, to remove all of these things and this illegal wall and arresting the people, he said. And we will not stop because this is our right, this is our land. We must continue this until we have freedom.