Evidence that left-wing activist Ezra Nawi instigated the kidnapping and torture of a Palestinian who sold land to Jews has surfaced, in the form of an official document on the matter written by Palestinian Authority police, a report on Army Radio said Wednesday. The document constitutes a “smoking gun” which directly links Nawi to the death of the Arab landowner at the hands of PA police, who was tortured because he sold land to Jews.
Nawi, who is currently awaiting trial on a number of security crimes, in the past bragged that he “had a hand” in turning in the Arab landowner in the south Chevron Hills region, but this is the first solid evidence that has surfaced in the case. Nawi was arrested in January 2016 as he tried to leave the country, and Army Radio said that police at the time recommended that he be tried for a number of security crimes, including cooperating with foreign terrorists. The document, the report said, has been in the hands of Israeli prosecutors for over a year, but they have not yet taken action on the matter.
Nawi’s role in the ongoing PA campaign against “traitors” who sell land to Jews was highlighted in a documentary that was aired in Israel several weeks before his arrest. In footage and recordings gathered by right-wing activists who infiltrated Ta’ayush and B’Tselem, another leftist group, Nawi and his B’Tselem colleague Nasser Nawaje are seen bragging to each other about how many Palestinian land-sellers they informed on to the PA. When the activists asked what their fate was, the two answered that “the PA takes care of them… they kill them.”
The PA document has Nawi meeting with PA security forces and naming the land-seller, who is known as Abu Halil in the document. Abu Halil was arrested and held for months by PA police, and tortured frequently, Israeli officials said. He died of a stroke after several months in custody.
Under PA law, selling land to Jews is a crime punishable by death. According to the Channel Two documentary, a number of the land-sellers whom Nawi and Nawaje told the PA about turned up dead. Nawaje is a resident of Chevron, in an area controlled by the PA. Nawi, however, is an Israeli citizen.
In the wake of the broadcast, dozens of MKs, ministers and ordinary Israelis called for an immediate criminal investigation into the groups for their support of the PA’s murderous policies, and as, if not murderers themselves, accessories to murder. Speaking in an interview after the broadcast, Nawi said that he had done nothing wrong and was simply complying with the rule of law in the PA, of which Israel was aware and has done nothing to attempt to influence over the past two decades.