(photo credit: AP)
A Palestinian Authority "military court" in Hebron on Sunday sentenced another Palestinian to death by firing squad on suspicion of "collaboration" with Israel.
The 28-year-old man, who used to serve in the PA's elite Presidential Guard, is the eighth Palestinian to receive the death sentence in the past few months. But none of the death verdicts, which require the approval of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, have been carried out.
The latest death sentence was issued by a three-judge panel in Hebron after holding 10 sessions to look into the charges against the former security officer.
The court was told that the accused, a resident of the Al-Aroub refugee camp north of Hebron, was recruited as an informant for Israel in 1997 while working at a car wash in Gush Etzion.
Presiding Judge Ahmed Abu Dayyah said in his verdict that the accused had been found guilty of collaboration with the "enemy." He said the actions of the accused resulted in the killing of a Palestinian gunman and the arrest of others who had sought sanctuary inside the Church of the Nativity during Operation Defensive Shield.
The man was also found guilty of passing on information to the Shin Bet that led to the arrest of Adnan Abayat, the former commander of Fatah's armed wing, the Aksa Martyrs Brigades, and his deputy, Rateb Abayat. The two, who operated in the Bethlehem area, were hiding inside a local hospital when they were caught by the IDF and later sentenced to life imprisonment.
Defense lawyer Yusef al-Ribie told the court that his client had been tortured during interrogation and called for his immediate release.