BDS Co-Founder Arrested for Tax Evasion

YERUSHALAYIM -

A co-founder of the BDS movement was detained briefly by Israeli authorities on charges of tax evasion Wednesday, was banned from leaving the country and his passport was taken from him, according to media reports.

Omar Barghouti, a Qatari-born Palestinian who lives in Israel as a permanent resident, allegedly failed to report approximately $700,000 in income earned over several years while working as the director of National Computing Resources in Ramallah. That sum and additional income from lecturing abroad were concealed from the Israeli tax authority.

A search of Barghouti’s home in Acre yielded documents and credit cards which indicated an undeclared bank account in the United States.

Barghouti, who opposes the existence of the state of Israel, is scheduled to receive the Gandhi Peace Prize at Yale University in April. The prize is awarded annually by the government of India to individuals or organizations that have engaged in political, economic or social change in nonviolent ways.