World, Middle East

Israel court extends detention of Anadolu Agency journo

Mustafa Kharouf to stay in custody until Sept. 1 giving authorities time to deport him

Abdelraouf Arnaout   | 01.08.2019
Israel court extends detention of Anadolu Agency journo

Israel

JERUSALEM

An Israeli court on Thursday extended the detention of an Anadolu Agency photojournalist until Sept. 1.

In late July, Israeli authorities returned Mustafa Kharouf, 32, to a detention center where he has been held for the last six months after failing to deport him to Jordan as Amman has refused to receive him.

The court held Thursday's hearing at a deportation center in Ramla city, his lawyer, Ady Lustigman told Anadolu Agency.

The lawyer said the court set Sept. 1 as the time limit for Israeli authorities to deport Kharouf.

Lustigman pointed out however that the court may release Kharouf if the Israeli authorities failed to deport him to Jordan or Algeria -- which has no diplomatic relations with Israel -- through a third country.

Kharouf was detained by Israeli police in East Jerusalem in January and held in prison in advance of his planned deportation to Jordan.

Israeli authorities say that Kharouf, who has lived in Jerusalem with his family since he was 12, was born in Algeria.

For the last 20 years, Israeli authorities have consistently refused to grant Kharouf a long-term residency permit, forcing him to obtain fresh tourist visas each year.

While Kharouf holds a Jordanian passport that allows him to travel to neighboring Arab states, it does not give him citizenship or residency rights in Jordan.

Kharouf has worked for Anadolu Agency as a photojournalist since last August.

The 1967 Arab-Israeli War, also known as the Six-Day War, resulted in Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza and Syria’s Golan Heights, triggering the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians and Syrians.

Under international law, the territories captured by Israel in the war are regarded as occupied territory.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has proven one of the most intractable in modern history, causing massive human suffering and economic deprivation.

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat;

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