15 years after ruling: Palestinian prisoner’s sentence reduced from 30 to 20 years

PNN/ Jerusalem/

In an exceptional decision and unprecedented move in the Israeli military court, on 27 March 2017, the Military Appeals Court accepted the request for the re-trial of Palestinian prisoner, Majd Ziadeh, and reduced his sentence from 30 to 20 years, after 15 years of imprisonment.

A year ago, defense lawyer, Labib Ghassan Habib, filed a request to revoke the original ruling and requested a retrial for Majed Zaida, a resident of Ramallah city.

Ziada was convicted of carrying out shooting operations against the Israeli occupation. After that, a grave mistake in the decision of the original verdict was revealed.

Through examining the prisoner’s file and checking the legal documents, the lawyers found that the military court had committed a grave mistake, which was basing their decision on the wrong charge sheet that the defendant did not confess to or was convicted of, which was completely different from his amended charge sheet (which he was convicted of).

In addition to the above-mentioned mistake, the court imposed this unjust and deterrent sentence because of the prisoner’s criticism of the Israeli courts’ unfairness and his protest against the killings of Palestinians without trial or punishment. Therefore, the court then committed an additional injustice against Ziadeh, the lawyer’s office said in a statement.

In response to the decision of the military appeals court, defense lawyer Labib Habib said: “the decision is a significant achievement for Majd and his family, relieving some of their burden. This decision sheds light on the injustice inflicted on the Palestinian prisoners and on the arbitrary measures and sentences that affect them, on the one hand, and stresses the importance of reviewing these unjust sentences and working to defy them and find gaps to overcome them on the other hand.”

Attorney Anan Odeh from Labib Habib Attorneys added: “ We are working on reviewing the files of the prisoners, as we did in the case of Majd, and the unjust procedures and judgments that affected them, especially in the second Intifada, is a collective and national responsibility, and through perseverance we can achieve some successes and alleviate the injustice on our prisoners.”