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Palestinian activists banned from entering Jerusalem and using social media

July 23, 2017 5:58 P.M. (Updated: July 23, 2017 10:50 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) -- A number of Palestinian activists and political leaders who were detained on the eve of massive protests in occupied East Jerusalem against Israeli security measures at Al-Aqsa Mosque were released on Sunday and temporarily banned from entering Jerusalem, using social media, and giving interviews.

The Israeli magistrate court in Jerusalem released head of the Fatah movement in Jerusalem Hatem Abd al-Qadir, Fatah’s Jerusalem secretary Adnan Ghaith, activist Nasser al-Hadmi, activist Nasser Ajaj, and activist Muhamnad al-Hawa.

They were all banned from entering Jerusalem for 10 days, ordered not to give interviews to journalists for 50 days, and ordered not to use social media for 30 days, according to lawyer for the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs Muhammad Mahmoud.

On Saturday, the head of the Jerusalem Committee for Families of Prisoners, Amjad Abu Asab, was released from custody after being banned from entering Al-Aqsa and the Old City for 15 days, while Zuheir al-Zaanin and Moussa al-Abbasi were released with no reported preconditions.

Israeli forces also released Fadi al-Mtour and Arin al-Zaanin to house arrest on a bail of 1,000 shekels ($280) each, while Madlin Issa from Kafr Qasim was released on the condition that he not enter the Al-Aqsa compound for 14 days.

In the wake of a deadly attack on July 14 at Al-Aqsa that triggered heightened Israeli security measures in the form of new metal detectors and a detention campaign targeting the activists and politicians, Israeli forces also detained 58 employees of the Waqf, the Islamic endowment that administers the holy site.

Human rights group al-Haq denounced the Israeli government for taking measures that it said amounted to collective punishment of Palestinians.

According to al-Haq, 55 of the Waqf employees were released later in the day, three were detained until the evening of July 17, while Israeli authorities also contacted 18 employees of the Waqf and informed them that they were prohibited from entering the Al-Aqsa compound without detailing the timeframe of the ban.
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