French-Palestinian lawyer jailed again by Israel over alleged terror links
Salah Hamouri, who rights groups say had his phone hacked last year by NSO’s Pegasus spyware, picked up a day after publishing op-ed criticizing ‘Israeli apartheid’
An Israeli military court on Thursday sentenced a French-Palestinian lawyer to four months in jail without charge or trial, saying he poses a threat to security.
Salah Hamouri, 36, was arrested on Monday and will be held under what is known as administrative detention.
The controversial practice allows for suspects to be detained without charge for renewable periods of six months.
The court accused him of being a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), and said he “endangers security in the region.”
The PFLP has been implicated in several fatal attacks on Israelis and is considered by Israel, the United States, and the European Union as a “terrorist group.”
A day before his arrest, Hamouri published an op-ed in the socialist magazine Jacobin in which he wrote that what “Israel’s apartheid regime has done is aimed at silencing me and encouraging me to give up and leave the country.”
Last year, human rights groups said Hamouri was on a list of activists whose phones were hacked by the Pegasus spyware from the Israeli NSO Group.
Hamouri has been arrested and jailed by Israeli authorities on several occasions.
In 2005, he was detained, then tried and convicted on charges of plotting to assassinate Ovadia Yosef, Israel’s former chief rabbi.
French President Emmanuel Macron discussed his case several times with then-prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
He was released from prison in 2011 but was re-arrested in 2017 and jailed for 18 months without trial over unspecified allegations.
“The detention system in Israeli prisons is often hard. The Israelis try everything to imprison our will, to isolate us from our society and our family,” Hamouri said at the time, denying association with the PFLP and the assassination attempt.
Israel says administrative detention protects sources and prevents attacks. Critics say it denies prisoners due process.