Qatamesh’s detention extended despite insufficient evidence

Ma’an News Agency reported today that the Palestinian prisoner rights group Addameer is condemning the extended detention of Palestinian write and political activist Ahmad Qatamesh. The Electronic Intifada published a report on Qatamesh’s arrest yesterday; his wife told EI that Israeli soldiers raided their family home in al-Bireh, near Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, on 21 April. This isn’t the first time that Qatamesh has been arrested; he was held without charge in administrative detention for six years in the 1990s, making him the longest-serving Palestinian political prisoner under administrative detention.

According to today’s report by Ma’an:

Israel’s Ofer military court told Qatamish on Thursday that he would remain behind bars for a further 6 days, after the military judge rejected a request by the police for an 11-day extension, a statement from the rights organization said.

The judge said that the evidence was not sufficient to justify the longer period, but he would be held for further investigation, according to Addameer.

Addameer says that the extension of Qatamesh’s detention suggests that he “is still being targeted for his writings and peaceful activism and not any ‘security’ reasons as claimed by the Israeli authorities.”


Maureen Clare Murphy

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Maureen Clare Murphy is senior editor of The Electronic Intifada.