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Israeli court extends detention of prisoner Aya Khatib

An Israeli court in Haifa city on Sunday rejected a request to place Palestinian prisoner Aya al-Khatib under house arrest and decided to extend her detention and postpone her trial until May 13.

The court has extended the detention of 31-year-old Khatib, a Palestinian woman from Ar’ara town in the 1948 occupied lands, several times since she was kidnaped from her home on February 17.

During the court hearing that was held today, the defense replied to the indictment filed against the prisoner and a decision was taken to hold sessions to listen to witnesses’ statements.

The indictment against prisoner Khatib, who is noted for her charitable efforts, includes an accusation of helping poor families.

The Shin Bet security agency also claims that the Hamas Movement in Gaza recruited the young woman to carry out espionage activities and collecting funds.

According to legislation devised two years ago, Israel prohibits any Palestinian activity intended to provide humanitarian and social assistance for citizens.