Monday 3 December 2018 - 05:01

Israeli court orders release of Palestinian Jerusalem al-Quds governor to house arrest

Story Code : 764529
Governor of Jerusalem al-Quds for the Palestinian Authority, Adnan Ghaith, poses for a photograph in his office at the Palestinian Ministry of Jerusalem al-Quds Affairs
Governor of Jerusalem al-Quds for the Palestinian Authority, Adnan Ghaith, poses for a photograph in his office at the Palestinian Ministry of Jerusalem al-Quds Affairs' headquarters in the occupied West Bank town of al-Ram, near Jerusalem al-Quds, on November 4, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

Lawyer Rami Othman said Jerusalem al-Quds magistrate court justice Chavi Toker ruled on Sunday that Ghaith will be confined to his home through Tuesday, and could leave custody on bail and on condition he not enter the occupied West Bank for two weeks.

Ghaith and more than 30 Palestinian activists were arrested last week.

Last month, the Palestinian Jerusalem al-Quds governor was arrested by Israeli forces and held in prison for two days before being released. 

A large group of special Israeli forces arrested Ghaith in the Beit Hanina neighborhood of Jerusalem al-Quds on October 20 after intercepting his car.

The charges against him were not clear, but apparently had to do with his staunch opposition to the recent sale of a Palestinian-owned property in the Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds to Israeli settlers.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas appointed Ghaith, a longtime activist in Fatah political party, to the role of PA Jerusalem al-Quds governor in late August.

In his role, Ghaith is responsible for overseeing the PA’s operations in the neighborhoods within its jurisdiction on the outskirts of Jerusalem al-Quds.

Israeli military forces have arrested Ghaith many times in the past several years, including on suspicion of incitement, according to his brother Hani.

Ghaith, alongside Fatah activists, has spent several hours a week at Khan al-Ahmar Bedouin village, which is slated for demolition, in the past couple of months.

Tensions continue in the occupied Palestinian territories in the wake of Trump's recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital.

The dramatic shift in Washington’s policy vis-à-vis Jerusalem al-Quds on December 6 last year has triggered demonstrations in the occupied Palestinian territories, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, Morocco and other Muslim countries.

On December 21 last year, the United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of a resolution that calls on the US to withdraw its controversial recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israeli “capital.”

In an attempt to prevent the passing of the resolution, Trump threatened reprisals against countries that backed the measure, which had earlier faced a US veto at the UN Security Council.

On June 13, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution, sponsored by Turkey and Algeria, condemning Israel for Palestinian civilian deaths in the Gaza Strip.

The resolution, which had been put forward on behalf of Arab and Muslim countries, garnered a strong majority of 120 votes in the 193-member assembly, with eight votes against and 45 abstentions.

The resolution called on UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to make proposals within 60 days “on ways and means for ensuring the safety, protection, and well-being of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation,” including “recommendations regarding an international protection mechanism.”

It also called for “immediate steps towards ending the closure and the restrictions imposed by Israel on movement and access into and out of the Gaza Strip.”