Sheikh goes to jail for invading state land 130 times

Sheikh begins 10-month sentence after Supreme Court rejects appeal, claim to state lands he invaded over 100 times.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

One of the evacuations in Al-Arakib
One of the evacuations in Al-Arakib

Sheikh Sayah Abu Madiem, a resident of Rahat, began to serve a 10-month sentence for trespassing on state lands on Tuesday.

The sheikh was sentenced to prison after he was convicted of repeated invasions and trespassing on land on state land north of Be'er Sheva, nicknamed 'Al-Arakib'.

Bedouin activists and extreme left-wing activists and Abu Med'im leaders came over 130 times, claiming that these lands belonged to his family, and built illegally there time after time, forcing law enforcement authorities to divert vast resources and valuable time to enforce the law.

The claim of ownership was rejected outright several years ago by the Supreme Court, and recently the Supreme Court also rejected the appeal of Sayah on the prison sentence imposed on him.

The ruling states that "criminal activity that includes repeated invasion of land that has been evacuated for the purpose of building residential buildings therein, while ignoring the decisions of the courts in this matter, exceeds the limits of the legitimate protest. The actual facts do not show that the actions of the applicant were carried out against the background of the existence of a public struggle in order to justify granting permission to appeal in his case."

"With a lot of creativity and patience, Al-Arakib became a large-scale epic, and a comprehensive narrative of the Bedouins' claims against the State of Israel that ostensibly deprived them of land they had lived in for a long time," said Attorney Amichai Yogev, the head of Regavim in the south. "What worked for these organizations until a few years ago no longer holds water in our time. The narrative of Al-Arakib was refuted and torn apart in the Supreme Court's ruling, and the series of aerial photographs from decades ago shows that on aerial photographs. There was nothing, because there is nothing. "

"More than a hundred and thirty times the trampling of state laws was made possible until it was decided to send him to prison," Regavim added. "In the final analysis, Abu Mediam alone pays the price of the campaign of extreme leftist organizations, and we hope that the current punishment will deter others who trample the law on a mass level."