First Published: 2017-01-11

New charges for official accused of aiding Hamas
Mohammed al-Halabi, Gaza director of Christian humanitarian charity World Vision, is alleged to have funnelled aid money to Islamist movement that runs Gaza Strip.
Middle East Online

Protesters wave banners bearing Mohammed al-Halabi's portrait

GAZA - Israel on Wednesday announced new charges against the Gaza head of a major US-based NGO accused of diverting millions of dollars in aid to Hamas.

Mohammed al-Halabi, the Gaza director of Christian humanitarian charity World Vision, is alleged to have funnelled aid money to the Islamist movement that runs the Gaza Strip.

He is due in court again in the southern city of Beersheba on Thursday.

On Wednesday an updated charge sheet was published with two additional charges, including "aiding and abetting the enemy in a time of war" and "passing information to the enemy".

World Vision said was it was aware of the new charges and was "surprised to see them added at this stage in the process."

An Israeli foreign ministry spokesman declined to comment on the additional charges.

Halabi is expected to plead not guilty on Thursday after negotiations over a plea deal collapsed, a source close to the case said.

His legal team said Wednesday they still have not had access to much of the evidence against their client.

On January 4 a United Nations worker from Gaza was sentenced to seven months in jail for aiding Hamas "without intention."

 

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