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Hamas Should Be Taken Off Terror List, EU Legal Adviser Says

Decision to blacklist the Gaza group was improperly based on media reports, not a thorough investigation, Eleanor Sharpston claims ahead of European Court of Justice ruling on Hamas' appeal.

The Islamic militant group Hamas should be removed from the EU list of terrorist organizations, a legal adviser to the top court of the European Union recommended on Thursday, agreeing with a previous ruling that said the decision to include it had been based on media reports rather than considered analysis.
Eleanor Sharpston, one of ten legal advisers to the European Court of Justice, argued that the EU "cannot rely on facts and evidence found in press articles and information from the internet, rather than in decisions of competent authorities, to support a decision to maintain a listing," the court said in a statement.
She found that the EU's justifications for maintaining the Hamas listing were "not sufficient."
The European Union first included Hamas on its terrorist list in late 2001. The group, which has had de facto control of the Gaza Strip since 2007, appealed ensuing EU decisions as part of an attempt to prolong its listing as a terror group.
The EU's General Court ruled in December 2014 that Hamas should be taken off the list, taking issue with the fact that the listing had been based on "factual imputations derived from the press and the internet" rather than acts examined and confirmed by authorities.
But EU governments appealed that ruling to the European Court of Justice. On Thursday, the court received advice on the case from Sharpston. The top court generally follows these opinions. The final ruling is likely to take several more months.
Sharpston also looked at a similar case involving Sri Lanka's separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and there too came to the conclusion that decisions to maintain it on the EU terrorist list should be annulled.

DPA
Haaretz Contributor
read more: http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.743661

Schermata 2016 09 22 alle 14.36.45

Video of the Week New Clashes Erupt Between Israeli Security Forces, Muslim Worshippers

Temple Mount temporarily closed to Jewish visitors after clashes with police




The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said. The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled. Meanwhile, renewed clashes erupted between protesters and Israeli security forces near the Lion's Gate in the Old City, where police used stun grenades against the demonstrators. A regular dynamic has developed involving clashes between Palestinians and Israel Police over the past several days near the Lion's Gate. Dozens of Palestinians are present at the site on a regular basis, urging devotion to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount and condemning Israel. During Muslim prayer times, particularly the midday and nighttime prayers, hundreds and sometimes even thousands have been gathering there.

There have been outbreaks of violence during these periods, including stone-throwing or physical confrontations with the police. In most of these incidents, the police have been using stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets to disperse the crowds. In a number of cases, journalists in the area have also suffered violence at the hands of the police. On Tuesday, Hassan Shaalan, a reporter for the Ynet news website, was struck by a policeman even after he identified himself as a member of the press. A group of Jerusalem-based journalists released a statement of condemnation over the incident and called on the police to permit reporters to do their jobs. The Jerusalem Police responded: "This involved an incident that took place in the course of violent disturbances of the peace that occurred in Jerusalem while the police were acting to remove the demonstrators from the street after some of them refused to vacate. The forces working on the scene are under constant threat to their lives. http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.802141

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