Israel indicts youth activists for defending 3rd holiest site in Islam

Al Aqsa protectors

The Israeli police arrested several members of “Shabab al-Aqsa” on charges of maintaining vigil at al-Aqsa Mosque and thwarting Israeli break-ins at the site.

13 members of Shabab al-Aqsa Organization, which promotes Muslims’ sovereignty over al-Aqsa Mosque and the right to the freedom of worship, were recently arrested by the Israeli forces.

The members have been charged with being involved in campaigns to prevent break-ins from taking place at the holy site and organizing trips to Yafa and visits to ex-prisoners. The indictments also included the arrestees’ involvement in delivering lectures on Israel’s abduction and investigation tactics.

Lawyer Mufeed al-Haj, from the Palestinian Prisoners Society, said the 13 arrestees have been subjected to intensive interrogation in al-Mascoubiya detention center.

The young men were further charged with making a WhatsApp group comprising 22 members to circulate pieces of information on settler break-ins at al-Aqsa and on newly-released Palestinian detainees.

According to the lawyer, the campaign makes part of Israeli attempts to outlaw anti-occupation groups in Occupied Jerusalem and chase down activists and sit-inners at al-Aqsa Mosque so as to impose a new fait accompli at the site.

Lawyer al-Haj added that in August 2011 the Israeli Interior Security minister blacklisted Shabab al-Aqsa group as an outlawed body. 15 Palestinian youths were arrested at the time, one among whom was sentenced to 12 months in jail for being a member of the organization. The others were sentenced to three months

Head of the committee of Jerusalemite prisoners’ families, Amjad Abu Asab, also said the campaign against Shabab al-Aqsa youth amounts to an assault on holy al-Aqsa Mosque and Muslims’ freedom of worship at the site.

(Source / 15.06.2017)

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