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Ashrawi: 'Occupation is the worst form of incitement'

Aug. 1, 2018 3:42 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 2, 2018 9:55 A.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Palestinian Liberation Organization Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi denounced the sentencing of Palestinian poet Darin Tatour by the Israeli authorities to five months of prison.

Ashrawi said in a statement that "through her poetry, Darin, a Palestinian citizen of Israel, was exercising her right to free speech and advocating against the cruel and belligerent military occupation. Yet, Israel accused the poet of incitement whilst the occupation is the worst form of incitement."

She added that "Israel's unjust actions are in grave breach of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which calls for the protection of the fundamental rights of freedom of opinion and expression."

Tatour was sentenced to five months of prison and six months of suspended sentence on Tuesday after writing and posting a poem criticizing the Israeli occupation on her personal page on Facebook.

Ashrawi said that Israel is rapidly becoming an "autocratic and oppressive government and practicing blatant discrimination against its own citizens."

"It is distorting its own legal and judicial systems to promote an official policy based on ethnic nationalism, racism and xenophobia," Ashrawi said referring to the recent approval by the Israeli Knesset of the "Nationality Law," "if its violations are not curbed by the international community, it will succeed in cementing apartheid and racial supremacy throughout Israel and occupied Palestine."

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