Arab human rights groups to protest against Makhoul’s arrest, gag order

Posted: May 10th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: In the News, The Settlements | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off

Haaretz reports today that several Arab human rights group are planning a large rally in Haifa today to protest the arrest of activist Ameer Makhoul. A gag order is preventing Israeli media from reporting the arrest itself.

Makhoul, director of the Israeli Palestinian human rights NGO Ittijah, was arrested in his Haifa home at 3.00 am last Thursday. The family’s computers, cell phones and several documents were confiscated. The charges against him were not made public.

Arab MK’s are also planning to raise Makhoul’s issue in the Knesset, and if necessary, to appeal to the Israeli Supreme Court so it would lift the gag order and allow Makhoul to defend himself against the Shin Beit charges.

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In a different issue, today begins the trial of eight activists who took part in the protest in Sheikh Jarrah, the Jerusalem neighborhood being colonized by extreme rightwing settlers (with the support of Jerusalem’s mayor). The court has ruled in the past that most of the actions carried out by the Jerusalem police against the protesters were illegal, yet the effort to prosecute and deter the demonstrators continues.

Read more on Sheikh Jarrah here.


Shin Beit continues to make citizens disappear: activist Ameer Makhoul arrested; Israeli media not allowed to report

Posted: May 8th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Ameer Makhoul, director of the Israeli Palestinian human rights NGO, Ittijah, was arrested last week by Israeli police. The arrest happened Thursday, on 3 AM. According to his wife, Jnan, 16 policemen took part in the raid. They confiscated all the computers in the house, as well as documents, cell phones other personal material. The following morning the police also raided the offices of Ittijah and confiscated computers.

A gag order has been issued on the affair. Makhoul is an Israeli citizen; he lives with his family in Haifa.

The arrest has been reported by Richard Silberstein and JTA. Hebrew bloggers Idan Landau, Rehavia Berman and Yossi Gurevitz also wrote about it.

A day before his arrest, Makhoul announced his support for boycotting Israeli products from the settlements. Yet according to his wife, the warrant for his arrest was signed on April 23ed, so the reason for the arrest remains unclear. Since the charges against Makhoul are not made public, it is impossible to know whether it is another example to how Israel is beginning to persecute and arrest people for their views and for none-violate actions, or is it indeed a real case of national security. I guess that the gag order was an attempt to avoid exactly those kinds of questions.

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