Israel Sentences Palestinian MP to 15 Months in Prison
by Stephen Lendman
Khalida Jarrar is a highly respected Palestinian Legislative Council member, a civil society leader, and PLC Prisoners Commission head. She’s vice-chair of the Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association.
In April, Israeli forces abducted her pre-dawn. She’s been lawlessly administratively detained, uncharged and untried, until subjected to a kangaroo, mandated to convict, military tribunal.
So-called evidence against her is fabricated, of no validity whatever. Her arrest, detention and sentencing is entirely politically motivated. She committed no crimes.
Earlier charges against her were reduced from 12 to two – membership in a legal organization Israel banned for political reasons (the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – PFLP) and incitement, targeting her right of free expression.
Addameer explained information used against her dates from 2009. Arresting, charging and convicting her now shows the process used against her has no validity.
Israel’s use of military tribunals violates Fourth Geneva Articles 64 and 66, affirming the penal laws of occupied territories remaining in force, and requiring non-politically motivated trials.
Article 43 of the 1907 Hague Convention requires occupying powers to respect the laws in force in territories they control.
Israel flagrantly breaches all international laws. Addameer called for a national legal stance for the boycott of these military courts which are in contravention with international law.”
“It also calls for the referral of the continued use of these military courts in the trials of Palestinian civilians and representative leaders to the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice, as these military court trials fail to provide the minimum standards of fair trial guarantees.”
Israel’s systematic breaches of international law constitute high crimes of war and against humanity. Thousands of Palestinians like Jarrar languish in its gulag for political reasons – subject to rearrest any time if released.
Palestinian minister for prisoner affairs, Issa Qaraqe, called Jarrar’s trial “arbitrary and legally unjustified. This (was) a political arrest. The charges against her are fabricated and ridiculous… There are no security reasons as claimed by the Israeli authorities.”
Jarrar is courageously forthright. Her show trial and sentence were “vengeful, arbitrary and political, with an aim to punish her for her political opinions and activism for Palestinian human rights.”
Witnesses against her said their testimonies were extracted by “torture and ill-treatment.” No legitimate tribunal would accept them.
Her lawyer, Mahmoud Hassan, explained she “doesn’t expect (to receive) any justice from the court of the occupation, especially when the prosecution says that she will be held under an administrative order if the court orders her release.”
A PFLP statement called the ruling against her “tyrannical and part of the ongoing Israeli terrorism against the Palestinian people.”
She’s one of 15 Palestinian legislators languishing unjustly in Israel’s gulag – entirely for political reasons, most held administratively uncharged and untried.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
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