Ashqelon - Danger to Regional Security, Health Problems

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Hana Raanan, Yael Agmon (reporting)

Translation: Jonathan. M.

Judge: Lieutenant-Colonel Meir Lachan, 

Investigator - Moshe Levi

Detainee #1: Mawad Qawassma.

The suspect was arrested on the 28.2.08, in connection with the Dimona Terror Attack. This is his third remand in custody hearing. The investigation asks for a remand extension of 15 days. The detainee last talked to his family on the phone on 6.3.08.

He is not represented by an attorney.

Detainee: I've been under arrest for 20 days and am yet to be questioned.

Judge: I have reviewed the confidential file and the case report. Both show supposed evidence of a risk for regional security. This is the third remand in custody. The investigation is ongoing and complex. In accordance with the evidence I order extension of custody for another 12 days, until the 14.8.08.

The hearings started at 10:33 and ended at 10:40

Detainee #2: We could not pick up his name.

When I asked the investigator to repeat his name I was greeted with a hostile response and a clear demand that we refrain from approaching him, since this can jeopardize his ability to perform his work.

Detention since 5.2.08.

Investigator: we ask for an additional 11 days' extension of remand in custody.

The detainee is represented by attorney Anuar Abu Omar who spoke to me yesterday over the phone. I updated him on today's hearing. I looked for him in the entrance but could not find him.

Detainee: I have been under arrest for almost 60 days. My medical condition is very bad. My interrogation has ended a month ago. All that I've said in my interrogation was a lie so they would leave me alone. It's been a month since I was interrogated.

Judge: I am looking at a fourth remand in custody request. The investigation intends to finish the investigation and pass the material to the prosecution. The file shows alleged evidence of serious compromise of regional security. As a result, it is my opinion that the detainee needs to remain in custody until the end of the proceedings.

Extension of remand in custody for 11 days, until 13.4.08.

The detainee's medical condition has been mentioned in previous hearings and I order that it is looked into.

The hearings started at 10:50 and ended at 10:54

Detainee # 3: Qawassma (surname)

Fifth remand hearing.

Investigator: asking for a remand in custody of 11 days. The suspect is related to the Dimona terror attack. He is represented by attorney Fahmi Awiwi. I updated him on the hearings that took place.

Detainee: I don't understand why my custody is remanded if I'm not being interrogated.

Decision: I have reviewed the confidential file and the case report, which includes the suspect's admission to activity that compromises regional security. This is the fifth extension of remand in custody, but it is my impression that this is a very complicated investigation and that previous remand of custody were all short and in accordance with specific requests. As a result of the mounting evidence against the suspect, I order an extension of remand in custody of 11 days, until the 13.4.08.

The hearing started at 11:00 and ended at 11:05.

Following the above hearings, there were 3 detaineesinfo-icon, barred from meeting with a lawyer.

There is a slight change in court proceedings - eye covers of the detainees are removed earlier. When asked, we were told that there is no obstacle in removing the covers once they enter the court. This change has improves conditions and makes it easier for detainees to mount the stairs.