An important sacred site in Palestine was the scene of hours of techno rave over the past weekend. The controversial party arouses great indignation in the country. A prominent DJ has been arrested on suspicion of organizing the event at the Nabi Musa Shrine, which has been renovated with EU funds. Muslims believe that the tomb of Moses is there.
Sama Abdulhadi | is a leading figure in the Palestinian dance scene and an established name on the global DJ circuit. She was arrested in the city of Ramallah on Sunday after playing a headline the day before at a modest techno festival at a West Bank mosque between Jericho and Jerusalem.
Abdulhadi was reportedly guilty of sacrilege of the mosque and making fun of Moses, an important figure for Muslims, Christians and Jews. Human rights organizations are calling on the Palestinian government to release her as soon as possible.
On social media, you can see countless images of hundreds of young people dancing together in a building that normally serves as a place of prayer. Later that evening, they had a furious crowd after them who had heard about the event. Some protesters were armed with baseball bats, as can be seen in the videos. “They have alcohol and naked women in a holy place!” some savage Palestinians shouted as they stormed the party. The cops rushed to send everyone home, avoiding a brutal confrontation.
Astonished by the events, Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh promises to bring party officials to justice. One of them is DJ Sama Abdulhadi. She is accused of violating article 275 of the Palestinian Penal Code, which says that the “desecration” of holy places is prohibited. His lawyer Hadi Mashal rejects the accusation. “Is his action really contrary to this article?” I don’t see how ”he said CNN. “We hope the investigation will be completed in a few days.”
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Approval or not?
According to the DJ’s father, his daughter is innocent, as the party would not have taken place inside the shrine, but just outside. A petition calling for Abdulhadi’s immediate release even states that the Palestinian ministry has given written permission for the event and that it should be filmed as part of a larger project to promote Palestinian techno music.
In the petition, that has already been signed more than 60,000 times, says Abdulhadi’s arrest is being used by the Palestinian government to counter “public outrage”. “It is an official evasion of responsibility rather than a legal crisis,” he read. Abdulhadi’s request for release on bail was rejected. She must now spend the end of the year in prison.
Ammar Dweik, director of the Independent Palestinian Human Rights Commission, calls for his immediate release. “We asked for release today because his arrest made no sense. She had obtained permission from the Ministry of Tourism. Nebi Mussa is not only a religious place, but also a tourist place. If electronic music did not suit him, the ministry should not have given permission.
However, the Palestinian tourism ministry denies endorsing the party. A spokesperson does not rule out the possibility that the Ministry of Religious Affairs has given the green light for the festivities. The Ministry of Religious Affairs, for its part, also strongly denies giving its permission for the event. “I feel disgust and anger over what happened to Nabi Musa. I don’t know yet who is responsible for this sin, but they will be punished appropriately for this outrage, ”said a spokesperson for the Prime Minister. “A mosque is a house of God. Its holiness is the holiness of religion itself.
In recent days, various angry Palestinians have destroyed all the furniture in an inn in the mosque building in protest. The items were set on fire outside, can be seen in the Twitter videos below.
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