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Sunday, July 16, 2006



Hardly a news story from the Middle East goes by without the reader or viewer being reminded that three Israeli soldiers have been captured, excuse me, "kidnapped." But since the day it happened, I don't think I've heard once about the 64 Palestinian Cabinet ministers, legislators, and other officials who were kidnapped, excuse me, "arrested," by the Israeli government on June 25. Just out of curiousity I decided to try to find out what's been happening to them, and it turns out, to my surprise, they have actually been in court.

This report from July 6 gives some basics:

Hamas Cabinet ministers and legislators, abducted by the Israeli occupation last week, appeared in an Israeli occupation military court for the second day. They maintain their arrest is illegal.

Now here they are in the military court at the Ofer Military Base on the outskirts of Ramallah.

They denounced their arrest as a "crime".
And this report from July 9 adds an interesting twist:
Israel thought it captured senior Hamas officials in the West Bank, but the 32 legislators and ministers arrested last week by the Israel Defense Forces denied in interrogation that they belong to the Hamas movement.

According to the London-based al-Sharq al-Awsat, when Hamas members were asked about their affiliations they said they were elected on an independent list called The List for Change and Reform and that they do not belong to Hamas.
I'd have to look really hard to find any denunciations of these arrests from the West. Because I'm pretty sure they haven't been any.

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