High Court: Allow Sheikh Jarrah demo

Judges slam police ban, call for solution so that protest can go ahead.

March 4, 2010 14:05
Palestinian and Israeli activists protest in Sheik

sheikh jarrah protest 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

The High Court of Justice on Thursday leveled fierce criticism at the Israel Police for banning a demonstration planned by left–wing activists in Sheikh Jarrah.

It came during a hearing on a petition filed by residents of the east Jerusalem neighborhood who had asked the court to allow the Saturday night protest against the eviction of Arab families from homes in the neighborhood.

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Judges expressed bewilderment as to why police had not made every effort to find a fitting time for the demonstration, asking rhetorically, “Are we in the year 1980?”

The hearing came to a temporary halt with Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch suggesting that prosecutors reach an agreement with police to try and negotiate with the petitioners to find a solution. She also asked that Jerusalem police chief Cmdr. Aharon Franco attend the hearing in the afternoon to present the stance of police.

Friday protests in the neighborhood have continued to grow in size.

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