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Right-wing Israelis want Fatah men arrested

Aug. 6, 2009 11:46 A.M. (Updated: Aug. 7, 2009 4:40 P.M.)
Bethlehem – Ma’an – Right-wing members of the Israeli Knesset initiated a petition to the country’s High Court on Thursday calling for the arrest of five delegates at the Fatah Conference in Bethlehem, according to news reports.

MK Michael Ben Ari (Ichud Leumi), a settler, and his Knesset aide, Itamar Ben-Gvir, submitted the petition on Wednesday, Israel’s Channel Seven reported Thursday.

One of those included in the arrest petition is former Al-Aqsa Brigades fighter Zakariya Zubeidi, who was granted amnesty by Israel in 2007 and pledged to give up violent resistance in return for a pledge by Israel to stop pursuing him.

According to the Israeli news channel the right-wing Israelis justified the petition saying, “These people should be arrested because their hands have Israeli blood [on them] after their attacks against Israel and their being released was a mistake.”

The court asked Attorney General Menachem Mazuz and Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi to explain why an injunction wasn't issue to prevent the men’s passage through military checkpoints to Bethlehem.

The MK's aide, Ben-Gvir, has his own legal history. He was criminally indicted and convicted of offenses including incitement to racial hatred in 2008. MK Ben Ari lives with his wife and seven children in the illegal West Bank settlement of Karnei Shomron, near Qalqiliya.
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