The wife of Palestinian Professor Abdul-Halim Al-Ashqar said his lawyers succeeded in obtaining a court verdict ordering the US security authorities to bring him back immediately from Israel.
In remarks to the Palestinian Information Centre (PIC), Asma Muhanna said that the court order banned Al-Ashqar’s transfer to Israel, adding that he was flown back to the US from Ben Gurion airport and sent to a jail in Virginia.
A few days ago, Al-Ashqar was kidnapped illegally by the FBI and taken aboard a plane to Ben Gurion airport in Israel in order to hand him over to the authorities there, but he was kept on the plane following a US court order.
Later, Al-Ashqar was returned to the US aboard the same plane after a US court issued a decision in this regard.
In November 2007, the American authorities had sentenced Al-Ashqar to 11 years in prison after placing him under house arrest for nearly two years.
He was sacked from his teaching post at Washington University in August 2004. He was subsequently arrested and accused, with no evidence, of illegally collecting funds for Hamas, and placed under house arrest.
Ashqar nominated himself as an independent presidential candidate in the Palestinian election held on 9 January 2005. He was one of ten contenders seeking to succeed Yasser Arafat.