Islamist leader sentenced to 11 months for incitement

Julie Wiener

(JTA) — Islamist cleric Sheik Raed Salah was sentenced to 11 months in prison for inciting violence against Jewish-Israelis.

Salah, who leads the Islamic Movement’s Northern Branch in Israel, was initially sentenced in March, but had appealed the ruling. The Jerusalem District Court rejected his appeal Tuesday, various media outlets reported.

READ: Meet the Islamic Movement, Netanyahu’s newest public enemy

Salah’s conviction is for remarks made in a 2007 speech in which he urged “all Muslims and Arabs [to] start an intifada [uprising] to support holy Jerusalem and the blessed Al-Aqsa mosque.”

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Salah will start his sentence on Nov. 15.

Knesset member Ahmed Tibi of the Arab Joint List told The Jerusalem Post earlier that the attempt to jail Salah is an effort “to exploit the tension and fervor in the street to quickly put Salah in jail as part of [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s effort to ban the Islamic Movement.”

Netanyahu, government officials and other Israelis have blamed the Islamic Movement’s Northern Branch for the recent wave of violence in Israel and the West Bank.

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