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Sheikh Raed Salah detained in Jerusalem

Feb. 22, 2011 4:57 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 23, 2011 1:03 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli police on Tuesday detained Islamic Movement leader Sheikh Raed Salah in Jerusalem while he was visiting an East Jerusalem neighborhood, saying he was suspected of committing arson.

Israel's police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said Salah was suspected of setting fire to a forest area in southern Israel two weeks ago.

Salah's advisor Sheikh Ali Abu Sheikha said the sheikh was detained after visiting a sit-in protest tent in Silwan, the site of frequent home demolitions.

Though he has been periodically barred from Jerusalem, Salah regularly visits families with home demolition and eviction orders in a show of support.

Salah was released from an Israeli jail in December, after serving five months for allegedly spitting at an Israeli policeman in February 2007, a charge he has always denied.

On his release from prison, he said he was the victim of political persecution.

He has been detained on a number of occasions.

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