By Abdelrauf Arnaut
JERUSALEM (AA) - An Israeli court will examine a request by the prison authorities to extend solitary confinement for Sheikh Raed Salah, the head of the Islamic Movement in Israel, by another six months, according to a lawyer for the Palestinian resistance icon.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, lawyer Khaled Zabarqa said the request comes shortly before Salah completes an initial six-month stint in solitary confinement.
"The request was lodged last week; it will be heard by Israel’s Central Court on Thursday," he said.
"There is no justification for Sheikh Raed’s continued isolation," Zabarqa said. “This request only strengthens our belief that this issue [i.e., Salah’s incarceration] is political in nature.”
He went on to assert that Salah was being singled out for punishment by the Israeli authorities “in revenge for his efforts in recent years to draw attention to the plight of Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque."
The lawyer also warned of the possible toll that continued solitary confinement could pose to his client’s health.
In August of last year, Israeli police arrested Salah from his home in the city of Umm al-Fahm in northern Israel before charging him with “incitement to violence."
Israel outlawed Salah’s Islamist Movement in late 2015 for alleged “anti-Israel activities."