Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Israel continues illegal sentences of Hamas PLC members; extends three terms

Date: 05 / 05 / 2009 Time: 15:43

Nablus – Ma’an – Israeli military courts announced longer prison terms for three Hamas lawmakers and added time to the sentence of head of the Palestinian Legislative Council Aziz Ad-Dweik Tuesday afternoon.

Before a military judge the sentence of Jerusalem governorate lawmaker Muhammad Abu Teir and Hebron governorate lawmaker Nayef Arjoub sentences were increased to four years from three and half with no further charges being laid against them. Bethlehem governorate lawmaker Mahmoud Al-Khatib’s term was increased to three and a half years up from three years.

Israeli military court officials also brought PLC Leader Aziz Ad-Dweik into the building to “renew” his trial and increase his sentence. He has been imprisoned since June 2006 without charge.

Hamas leader Faze’a Sawafta said the detentions were illegal and aimed at restricting the chance for democracy in Palestine.

There are currently 40 Hamas lawmakers and ministers in prison, according to Sawafta Israeli authorities are waiting until the end of the legal term of the PLC to release them. The term will finish January 2010.