Radical cleric: The statements were freedom of speech

Sheikh Raed Salah's lawyer rejects claims he incited, says his statements were freedom of speech.

Dalit Halevi ,

Sheikh Raed Salah
Sheikh Raed Salah
Avi Dishi/Flash 90

A lawyer for Sheikh Raed Salah, the head of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel who was detained on suspicion of incitement last week, said Sunday his client maintains a high spirit and is confident he did not break any laws.

Salah’s arrest was extended until August 21 for the purpose of completing the investigation. Police suspect he incited terrorism and violence and expressed support for the Islamic Movement, which was outlawed by the Israeli government in November of 2015.

Speaking with the Quds Press news agency, the lawyer said that all options are open, starting with the indictment of Salah, his transfer to administrative detention and his release from detention.

He accused the Israeli government of incitement against Salah and of then trying to find information on which to file an indictment.

"The accusations of incitement directed against Sheikh Salah are based on statements he made or expressed in the framework of freedom of speech guaranteed by law," the lawyer maintained.

This is not the first time that Salah has been arrested. The radical cleric previously served a nine-month jail sentence after being convicted of encouraging violent attacks and inciting racism in a 2007 sermon.

He has in the past labeled Israeli leaders “terrorists” and “enemies of Allah” in a speech to Muslims in Be’er Sheva, and was also jailed for five months in 2010 for spitting at an Israeli police officer.



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