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Israel prosecutors call for extending solitary detention of Sheikh Raed Salah

Palestinian resistance icon Sheikh Raed Salah gathers with supporters after an Israeli court sentenced him to 28 months in prison in the northern city of Haifa, on February 10, 2020. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]
Palestinian resistance icon Sheikh Raed Salah gathers with supporters after an Israeli court sentenced him to 28 months in prison in the northern city of Haifa, on February 10, 2020. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]

Israeli public prosecution yesterday submitted a request to extend the solitary confinement of the head of the Islamic Movement in Israel, Raed Salah, for additional six months.

Salah's lawyer, Khaled Zabarka, told local media that the request was submitted "on behalf of the prison authority to the Beersheba District Court," adding that the court session was set for today.

Salah has served various sentences in Israeli prisons, including one in 1981, and others in 2003 and 2010. He was re-arrested a year later in the United Kingdom, and in 2016 as well. More recently, he has been imprisoned since 2017.

The High Follow-Up Committee (HFC) for Arabs in Israel has called on the prison authority to stop "abusing Sheikh Salah."

"Salah's isolation is a political revenge, which was not stipulated in the ruling against him," the HFC statement read. "Salah has been in solitary confinement since December," it added.

The HFC warned that his isolation could have "negative consequences on his health," adding that it held the Israeli authorities responsible for his "deteriorating health condition."

Sheikh Raed Salah: Israel complicit in crimes against Arabs

Last month, the Freedoms Committee at the Palestinian Journalists' Syndicate said it was planning on taking "a series of steps against the activities practiced by the Israeli prisons authority against Salah," calling for "removing Salah from the solitary confinement" and to "end to the policy of restricting him."

Salah was detained by Israeli forces in August 2017 and indicted for incitement following his criticism of the erection of metal detectors at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

He was sentenced to 28 months in prison by an Israeli court. He served 11 months, half of which was spent in solitary confinement, before he was moved to house arrest.

After two years under house arrest, in August 2020 Salah began a 17-month jail term on incitement charges.

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