Israel court hands Palestinian humanitarian worker four-year sentence
An indictment was filed against Aya Khatib, 33, from the town of Arara in Israel, in March 2020, accusing her of "providing information with the aim of undermining state security, communicating with a foreign agent of the Hamas movement and raising funds to support terrorism".
The courts have been looking at the activist's case for three-and-a-half years. She spent a year and four months in jail and is currently on house arrest with an electronic bracelet on her leg, The New Arab's Arabic sister service Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reported.
After the decision was issued, Khatib said: "They will not be able to defeat or break us. They will not be able to change a whisker of our principles.
"I hope that people won't be afraid and will not refrain from doing good deeds because of what is happening."
An Israeli court has sentenced prominent Palestinian activist and charity worker Aya Khatib, a mother of two, to four years in prison, accusing her of spying and aiding 'Hamas'— PALESTINE ONLINE 🇵🇸 (@OnlinePalEng) August 16, 2023
Khatib insists the money she raised was to help children in the besieged Palestinian territory of… pic.twitter.com/92IC47QhI3
It is expected Khatib will surrender to prison authorities on 3 September to serve a reduced two years.
The mother-of-two said she carried out humanitarian work for relief group Think of Others, collecting donations to help the sick and needy in the Gaza Strip, West Bank and Israel.
Khatib's defence lawyer, Bader Ighbariyyah, said an appeal will be filed with the Supreme Court seeking to reduce the sentence.
"Most of those who testified in court spoke about the humanitarian acts Aya performed for people even the Palestinian Authority abandoned," he said.
"A doctor testified in court that if Aya hadn't intervened to help a girl from Gaza, she wouldn't be among us [the living] today."