Israel Holds Chairwoman of Palestinian Women’s Union without Charge or Trial

Khitam al-Saafin was sentenced to three months without charge or trial by Israel, (Photo via Maan)

Israeli authorities sentenced Khitam Al-Saafin, the chairwoman of the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committee, to three months in administrative detention on Sunday.

The head of the legal unit for prisoners’ rights group Addameer, Mahmoud Hassan, said that a court session would be held on Wednesday in the Ofer Detention Center to confirm the sentence.

Israeli forces detained Al-Saafin on July 2 in the village of Beituniya in the central occupied West Bank, on the same day as they detained Palestinian Legislative Council member Khalida Jarrar, another prominent feminist and human rights advocate.

The Ofer court extended both Al-Saafin and Jarrar’s detentions on Monday in order to search computers that were confiscated in their homes during the detention raids and to give the Israeli prosecution enough time to argue in favor of administrative detention.

“We protest the arrest of Palestinian lawmakers and women activists, as well as the ongoing detention of Palestinian political and civil society leaders,” Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Member Hanan Ashrawi said following Jarrar and al-Saafin’s detention, adding that “clearly, this political arrest is further proof that the judicial system in Israel has no relation to justice.”

According to Addameer, there were 6,200 Palestinians in Israeli prisons as of May, including 56 women, and 490 held in administrative detention.

Rights groups have claimed that Israel’s administrative detention policy has been used as an attempt to disrupt Palestinian political and social processes, notably targeting Palestinian politicians, activists, and journalists.

(Maan, PC, Social Media)

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