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Israeli court accuses slain Palestinian's twin of social media 'incitement'

October 29, 2016 at 7:30 am

The public prosecution of Israel’s Jerusalem magistrate court presented on Thursday a list of indictments against the brother of a slain Palestinian youth, accusing him of incitement on social media.

The prosecution accused 20-year-old Muhammad Shuyukhi of inciting “terrorism” on social media following the killing of his twin brother Ali by Israeli forces during clashes in the occupied East Jerusalem town of Silwan on 11 October.

Israeli forces had detained Muhammad Shuyukhi during an overnight detention raid two days after his brother was killed, amid widespread detention raids across the entire Jerusalem district following a deadly shooting in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of occupied East Jerusalem on 9 October which left two Israelis dead.

Ali and Muhammad Shuyukhi [Ma'an News Agency]

Ali and Muhammad Shuyukhi [Ma’an News Agency]

The indictment list presented on Thursday said that Muhammad Shuyukhi had published several posts on Facebook that included sayings which were said to have “incited terrorism”, while other posts of his included support for the Hamas movement and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the military wing of the Fatah movement.

The indictment against Shuyukhi coincided with a recent crackdown by the Israeli government on social media “incitement”,

Israel has stepped up its campaign against Palestinian journalists, media organisations and ordinary citizens since a wave of unrest across Israel and the occupied West Bank began last October.

While the Israeli authorities have said those targeted were responsible for incitement against Israel, rights groups argue the crackdown is a blatant violation of speech freedoms.

Last month, two right-wing Israeli ministers met with top Facebook executives in an effort to “minimise online anti-Semitic incitement” – Israel’s latest effort to pressure the social media site to coordinate to remove content considered to promote “terrorism”.