The Jerusalem police continue to harass the leadership of the Palestinian Civil Society, especially in Silwan. Jawad Siyam, one of the leaders of the community center of Wadi Hilweh, was arrested on January for an alleged assault of another Palestinian. After three months in house arrest, the Jerusalem court decided yesterday to release him. Today the police tried to raid Siyam’s house looking for him. Later he was called for investigation where he was arrested.
It is not the first time that the police tries to bypass the court decision. On February 22nd Jawad was supposed to be released from the house arrest. The night before, the police arrested him for a new accusation. This time he was accused for violating the house arrest and threatening the Palestinian that he allegedly assaulted. Jawad presented an alibi but the judge decided to send him to house arrest. At the hearing yesterday, the judge determined that the police concealed an evidence which proved that Jawad did not leave his house and therefore could not have met and threatened the complainant. Jawad was immediately released. 24 hours later he is arrested again, the new accusation is not known yet.
On the day of the hearing in February, the Israeli newspaper of Maariv published a report based on information given by the Jerusalem police, about Siyam’s alleged involvement in violence and in violent protests against the settlements in Silwan. “Security Sources” were quoted as saying that “unless Jawad and his friends are deported from the area, there will be deterioration in the attacks against Israel”.
I have been following closely the case of Jawad Siyam. It is clear to me that there is a decision by the police to stop Jawad by all means. With very poor evidence the police managed to convince the court that Jawad must stay at house arrest, and when it ended they managed to extend it by concealing the true evidence. Tomorrow, when Jawad is brought to court after spending the night in custody, we will find out what are the new allegations that the police is using in order to prevent the legitimate social and political activity of Jawad and his friends in Silwan.
The arrest of Jawad Siyam, 21/2/11