Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Charges on West Bank journalist shelved as Israeli prosecution fails to bring witnesses

Date: 09 / 06 / 2009 Time: 16:27

Bethlehem - Ma’an - The Israeli military court at Ofer Prison froze the case of journalist Hassan Abd Aj-Jawad and has set no date for the resumption of hearings stating only that the military prosecution failed to “prove its statements.”

Aj-Jawad’s lawyer, Khaled Al-A’raj said that the military prosecution failed to bring witnesses in more than 8 sessions so the court was forced to freeze what they have called the “preventive measures” against Aj-Jawad.

The court noted the prosecution could reopen the file when witnesses were available.

The Israeli military court set bail at 75,000 Israeli shekels (19,000 US dollars). Aj-Jawad was detained in February 2008 and was held without charge for 16 months. He was seized on accusations of being an activist with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Before his detention Aj-Jawad was arrested several times, was deported to Jordan in 1985, returned home and was arrested several times again by Israel.

After eight times in Israeli court no case produced against leftist journalist
10.06.09 - 09:15

Bethlehem / PNN – Due to a lack of evidence the Israeli military court of Ofar the case against journalist Hassan Abdel Jawad may be thrown out.

The military court noted that the prosecution failed to prove its case after eight attempts.

Attorney Khaled Al Araj said that the military prosecutor did not bring witnesses or evidence against the journalist eight times and accordingly the military court decided to freeze the precautionary measures against him. If the prosecution brings witnesses, says Al Araj, the Israelis will have a ninth try to reopen the file.

The Israeli military court imposed a fine of 75,000 shekels on Abdel Jawad of which five thousand NIS was paid.

The journalist was imprisoned 16 months ago as a member of the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. This is not his first arrest, however. Israeli forces imprisoned him several times and even deported him to Jordan in 1985.