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Rights group: Israel arrested 500 Palestinians over Facebook posts

Facebook logo [West McGowan/Flickr]
Facebook logo [West McGowan/Flickr]

Palestinian Prisoners’ Centre (PPC) said yesterday that Israel had arrested 500 Palestinians, including women and children, as a result of their social media posts, Al-Resalah newspaper reported.

PPC spokesman Riyadh Al-Ashqar said that the Israeli occupation began arresting Palestinians because of their social media posts following the start of the Jerusalem Intifada claiming such uploads incite terror against Israel.

Israel is using its recently formed “Cyber Unit” to monitor Palestinian social media posts, the centre said.

This unit, Al-Ashqar said, classifies any post that glorifies Palestinian martyrs, discloses Israeli crimes, supports resistance or mentions the words and phrases including “martyr” and “intifada” as “incitement of terror”.

In the recent years, Al-Ashqar said, Israeli occupation courts have issued hundreds of sentences against Palestinians on the ground of incitement on social media. The sentences ranged between months and years in prison, house arrests or bans from using social media platforms and mobile phones. The terms were handed down to men, women and children.

Read: Israel convicts Palestinian poet for ‘incitement to violence’

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