RealNews

Jailed colleagues refuse to testify against Barghouti

The murder trial of a prominent Palestinian leader, Marwan Barghouti, opened yesterday with prosecution witnesses refusing to testify and defence lawyers only grudgingly representing their client. Mr Barghouti, who was the leader of the military wing of Yasser Arafat’s Fatah movement in the West Bank at the time of his capture last year, is charged with complicity in Palestinian militia attacks which killed 26 Israelis. He refused to plead on the murder charges, or on membership of a terrorist organisation and several related charges. He said the Israeli courts had no jurisdiction, called the trial a “show” and denounced the occupation of Palestinian land as the real terror. “This court only represents the Israeli occupation. I do not relate to this dirty process of lies,” he said. The first three witnesses called by the prosecution were three Palestinian associates of Mr Barghouti serving long prison sentences. One, Nasser Abu Hmeid, a member of al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, put his hands over his ears when spoken to by a judge and said that he would not speak to the court. Full Story

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