Brussels, 24 August 2010 A 167/10 – The spokesperson of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice President of the Commission Catherine Ashton issued the following statement today :
« The High Representative is concerned by the conviction of 39-year-old Abdallah Abu Rahma in an Israeli military court on charges of incitement and organising and attending demonstrations. He is due to be sentenced shortly. The EU considers Abdallah Abu Rahma to be a Human Rights Defender committed to non violent protest against the route of the Israeli separation barrier through his West Bank village of Bil’in.
The EU considers the route of the barrier where it is built on Palestinian land to be illegal. The High Representative is deeply concerned that the possible imprisonment of Mr Abu Rahma is intended to prevent him and other Palestinians from exercising their legitimate right to protest against the existence of the separation barriers in a non violent manner. «
Note to Editors: The EU attended all court hearings in the case of Abdallah Abu Rahma, who has been in detention since 10 December 2009. »