Ofer - Detention until conclusion of proceedings, Membership/activity in unauthorized association
Translation: Marganit W.
Prosecutors in the military courts have been claiming for years that all civilian activity in Palestine is terrorist activity. This is why all the social and civic organization: charities, women’s associations, orphanages and child welfare groups have all been declared unlawful organizations and shut down.
Judge: Lieut. Col. Shlomo Katz
Remand extension hearing in the case of Lama Alfahuri Khater
Defense: Atty. Akram Samara
The indictment includes three charges:
The first is ‘holding a position in an unlawful organization’. This charge includes 8 clauses.
Basically, the charge here is that in 2010, 70-90 Hebron women established a Women’s Committee to oversee education and community activity, including visits to ex-Hamas prisoners after their release, taking care of prisoners’ families, religious study etc.
Lama was in charge of public relations. Interestingly, the indictment notes that some of the committee meetings took place in private homes, for fear of being exposed by the Palestinian Authority, which would lead to detention.
Other charges are activity, membership and attending meetings of an unlawful organization.
Nowhere is there a claim that the women planned violent activity, but the key word here is Hamas.
In my humble opinion, all the clauses stem from the first charge (holding a position in an unlawful organization); the other secondary clauses – as always – are there to allow future bargaining with the prosecution.
The judge ordered remand extension until conclusion of the proceedings.
Next hearing was set for 10.10.18.
Lama’s husband and her mother were present in court. In a previous hearing her husband brought their daughter. The family has to alternate their visits, as only 2 members of the same family are allowed to attend the hearing.
Again, the husband asked what he should do to bring their 2-year old son for a visit. I assume the husband will not be allowed to visit Lama in prison: he himself had been under administrative detention for two years, and his brother was murdered by Baruch Goldstein at the Tomb of the Patriarchs.
All the hearings today started late due to cleaning before the High Holidays. The yard was crowded because there were also traffic trials. It was a particularly hot day, but no matter, Palestinians’ time does not count. When I left in the afternoon, many were still waiting for their hearings.