Israel releases PLC member, Sheikh Hassan Youssef, after six years

12:00 Aug 4 2011 Ramallah

The Israeli occupation yesterday (4th August) released the Hamas leader and deputy in the Palestinian Legislative Council, Sheikh Hassan Youssef. Mr Youssef was released from the Ofer military detention facility located in southern Ramallah.

The occupation authorities had refused to release the sheikh until he had served the duration of his sentence under the pretext that the law which allows sentence reductions had been annulled. A decision was initially made to release him on 25/08 but was later retracted. However, he and 76 other Palestinian prisoners were released yesterday.

When Youssef was arrested in 2005 and sentenced to six years in prison, he had just put himself forward as a candidate in legislative elections. He received the highest number of votes in the parliamentary elections; the results were announced while he was in prison.

Israel continues to imprison 20 deputies of the Palestinian Legislative Council.

[See News source links for information about re-arrest in early September, and family statement]
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