RAMALLAH, February 22, 2017 (WAFA) – The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) Wednesday said the Israeli military court Ofer reinstated the previous verdict of a Palestinian prisoner who was earlier released during a prisoners‘ exchange deal.
The court decided to reinstate Nael Barghouthi’s previous life sentence and 18 years after spending 36 years in jail and being released as part of a 2011 prisoners swap deal between Hamas and Israel.
The deal led to the release of 1,027 Palestinian prisoners, including Barghouthi in exchange of releasing Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who was held captive for over five years by Hamas in a cross border raid.
Barghouthi, who is also known as the dean of prisoners, was arrested at the age of 19 in 1978 along with his older brother Omar and cousin Fakhri for planning and executing an operation against Israel’s occupation.
Head of the prisoners and ex-prisoners committee Issa Qaraqe said the military court’s decision to reinstate the verdict is an act of revenge and racist. “It is an indication of Israel’s systematic policy of targeting released prisoners and detaining them without a valid reason.
He said the verdict is part of an ongoing effort by Israel to detain released prisoners since 2014. Since then Israel has detained 63 prisoners and reinstated their past verdicts.