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Israeli military to expel Jerusalem Palestinian

Dec. 24, 2010 11:28 A.M. (Updated: Dec. 26, 2010 12:08 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (AFP) -- The Israeli military has ordered an East Jerusalem Palestinian out of the city for four months for allegedly organizing protests against Israeli settlement there, the army and media said Thursday.

Adnan Gheith, 34, a resident of Silwan neighborhood, has 14 days in which to appeal the order and has said he plans to do so, a military statement said.

It said the army received "security and intelligence information linking Gheith with activity liable to cause a breach of public order within the city of Jerusalem."

The banishment order is based on a rarely used emergency statute from 1945, when Britain ruled Palestine prior to the establishment of Israel in 1948. It was often used against clandestine Jewish groups battling the British.

The military statement did not detail the suspicions against Gheith but the daily Haaretz said that he had been arrested several times for allegedly encouraging violent protest against Israeli security forces in Silwan.

The rundown neighborhood next to the walled Old City has been the scene of sporadic clashes that peaked in September when an Israeli security guard shot dead a local man he said attacked him.

At the heart of the conflict is a plan by Jerusalem city council to build a new biblical tourism park called the King's Garden, which would involve demolishing 22 Silwan homes it says were built illegally.

Palestinian residents are also angry at the continued presence of an illegally built seven-storey building housing Jewish settlers, despite a 2007 Israeli court order for its demolition.

Two weeks ago, an Israeli court expelled for the second time Hamas MP Mohammed Abu Teir, after four months in jail for defying a previous ban.

He was arrested on June 30 for entering mostly East Jerusalem after the interior ministry stripped him of his residence permit for his activity in the Islamist movement which rules Gaza.

A high court appeal is pending against the ministry's order.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Middle East war and unilaterally annexed it shortly after. About 200,000 Palestinians live there.
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