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Israel prevents Arab MK from visiting Sheikh Raed Salah in prison

A group of Tunisians hold placards as they gather to stage a protest against Israeli court's decision on sentencing Raed Salah to 28 months in prison, in front of the Municipal Theater in Tunis, Tunisia on 21 February 2020. [Yassine Gaidi - Anadolu Agency]
A group of Tunisians hold placards as they gather to stage a protest against Israeli court's decision on sentencing Raed Salah to 28 months in prison, in front of the Municipal Theater in Tunis, Tunisia on 21 February 2020. [Yassine Gaidi - Anadolu Agency]

The Israeli occupation government has prevented Arab-Israeli Knesset member Ahmad Tibi from visiting Sheikh Raed Salah in prison, Quds Net News reported on Monday.

The request for the visit was rejected by Internal Security Minister Omer Bar-Lev and the Israeli Prison Service, explained Tibi's office. "This followed a decision by the Knesset Speaker to prevent MKs from visiting prisoners inside [Israeli] jails until further notice."

Tibi was reported as saying that he had asked to visit Sheikh Raed Salah in order to check on his health, but the Ministry of Internal Security procrastinated before declaring its rejection in a written reply. According to the MK, this rejection contradicts the opinion of the legal advisor of the Knesset when he replied to the High Court of Justice saying that Knesset members have the right to visit Israeli prisons. The legal advisor argued that visiting Israeli prisons is part of the parliamentary immunity of MKs.

Sheikh Salah was detained by the Israeli occupation in August 2017 and indicted for "incitement" following his criticism of the installation of metal detectors at the gates of Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque compound. He was sentenced to 28 months in prison by an Israeli court. Having served 11 months, half of which was spent in solitary confinement, he was moved to house arrest.

After two years under house arrest, in August 2020, Salah began another 17-month jail term for "incitement".

Hamas: Israel's extension of Sheikh Raed Salah isolation politically motivated 

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