January 17, 2010
For immediate release
Israeli District Court Justice Kobi Vardi will hear arguments for and against the deportation of detained Ma’an News Agency journalist Jared Malsin on Sunday morning in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Ma’an attorney Daoud Castro will file his response at the Tel Aviv District Court, 1 Weizmann Street, following the presentation of the case against Jared by the Attorney General’s Office.
According to court documents filed on Thursday evening, signed by an interrogator at Ben Gurion International Airport, Jared was denied entry for the following reasons:
1) Refusal to cooperate
2) Lying to border officials
3) Reasons for arriving unclear
4) Violated visa terms
5) Entered Israel by means of lies
Disturbingly, the documents also reveal that interrogators had gathered online research into the journalist's writing history, which transcripts indicate included news stories "criticizing the State of Israel," among other allegations he authored articles "inside the [Palestinian] territories."
Ma'an attorney Castro Daoud will argue that these allegations do not constitute a valid justification for denial of entry because none signal Jared posed a security risk, as the documents ultimately conclude. Moreover, none trump the unprecedented violation of press freedom that would accompany his deportation.
Justice Vardi may call a hearing for Sunday afternoon. Friends, supporters and concerned members of the press will gather at the courthouse from 10am onward, awaiting announcement of the hearing's location.
See the following for more information:
On the reaction of Palestinian and international press associations:
On Jared’s fight to overturn the deportation order:
On the timeline of Jared’s detention and questioning:
For further inquiries, please contact:
George Hale (English)
Raed Othman (Arabic)
Nasser Lahham (Hebrew)
Update: Click here for the trial info.