World, Middle East

Israeli police arrest imam of Lid city's Grand Mosque

Israeli police say they are questioning Sheikh Yousef al-Baz about social media post

Abdelraouf Arnaout   | 17.06.2021
Israeli police arrest imam of Lid city's Grand Mosque

JERUSALEM 

The Israeli police on Thursday arrested Sheikh Yousef al-Baz, 63, the imam and preacher of the Grand Mosque in the central Israeli city of Lid.

Khaled Zabarqa, al-Baz's lawyer, told Anadolu Agency that an Israeli police force raided his home and took him for interrogation.

The Israeli police said in a statement that he was arrested for posting on social media on June 15 what they alleged "incitement against the Israeli police officers."

The Israeli police added that al-Baz is under investigation and will be taken to court to have his detention extended.

Zabarqa, from his part, refuted these allegations, saying what the Israeli police are referring to is a video from a US movie that is already on social media.

Al-Baz is a prominent religious figure among the Arabs in Israel, who represent almost 20% of Israel's 9 million population.

In the past two months, hundreds of Arabs have been arrested by the Israeli police as tensions in occupied East Jerusalem have escalated.

*Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara


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