Former El-Bireh mayor held in administrative detention

jamal-tawilMa’an reported that a former Palestinian mayor detained by Israeli forces this week will be held in administrative detention for six months, a prisoners group said Sunday, January 20, 2013.

Sheikh Jamal Tawil, who had held the mayoral post in al-Bireh, a neighborhood of Ramallah in the central West Bank, was detained on Tuesday.

The Solidarity Foundation for Human Rights said Ofer military court gave the former mayor six months in detention without charge.

Bushra Tawil, his daughter, told the Radio Bethlehem 2000 that a large number of Israeli soldiers broke into the home and detained the family in the living room; the soldiers then asked for the ID card of Jamal, reported IMEMC.

She added that one security officer asked her father about “how he is doing”, and that her father responded; “how can anything good happen while you are breaking into our home this violent way, and dozens of your soldiers are ripping through our property like savages”.

The officer said that Jamal is being kidnapped for “incitement against the state”. The army also confiscated Jamal’s mobile phone and his personal computer.

Bushra said that the army prevented her father from taking any extra clothes with him amidst the current extremely cold weather conditions especially following the recent snow storm that impacted the Palestinian territories.

Jamal Tawil was repeatedly kidnapped and imprisoned by Israel, and spent more than ten years in Israeli prisons, detention and interrogation centers. His wife, Montaha, and his daughter, Bushra, are also former political prisoners.As of December, 178 Palestinians were being held without charge in Israeli jails, including seven elected members of the Palestinian parliament, according to prisoners rights group Addameer.