West Bank Protest Leader Bassem Tamimi Released From Prison

Roughly a year after being arrested for organizing illegal protests, Bassem Tamimi is released from prison, amid suspicions that he will resume illegal protest activity.

Amira Hass
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail

A popular Palestinian leader was released on bail on Friday after serving a year in Ofer Prison.

Military judge, Maj. Amir Dahan decided to release Bassem Tamimi, a resident of the Nabi Saleh village, because of his mother's medical situation. Tamimi's mother suffered a stroke two weeks ago.

Bassem Tamimi kisses a relative outside of a hospital in Ramallah.Credit: AFP

Tamimi's defense attorney, Laviv Haviv, claimed that if he were not released at the end the legal proceedings, Tamimi would have served more time than the expected sentence he could have received for unauthorized protest processions and stone-throwing efforts.

The claim was based on the sentence received by Naji Tamimi, who was charged with similar crimes.

The army prosecutor opposed the release, claiming that the punishment Tamimi received as part of a plea bargain was less than the punishment received for similar convictions without a plea bargain.

In an article published by Tamimi in Haaretz on April 20, he claims that he poses an "ideological danger."

The prosecutor, Eran Levi, said in an appeal that Tamimi will "most definitely continue to use the status he received because of his arrest to influence young people to throw stones."

"The danger here is concrete. The crime here is ideological, and anything short of imprisonment will not prevent him from acting," continued Levi.

The judge, Lt. Col. Tzvi Lakah, rejected the prosecutors appeal, and decided to release Tamimi on condition that he not leave Ramallah, and he spend weekends at the hospital with his mother, or at his nephew's residence on house arrest. Two Israelis that participated in the protests in Ramallah signed on the third party bail of NIS 25,000.