Arab linked to riot is freed but banned from meetings
A judge has released the leader of an Arab immigrant group but barred him for three months from public gatherings, which prosecutors say he abused to incite violence during riots in the port city of Antwerp.
Dyab Abou Jahjah, 31, was arrested last Thursday and charged with wilful resistance, including a show of arms, obstruction of traffic and assaulting a police officer. He denied the charges.
The prosecutor's office said it would not appeal against the conditional release. An appeals process could have kept the Lebanese-born head of the Arabic European League in jail for another two weeks.
Police expect his conditional release will ease tension in Antwerp, home of a large North African immigrant community and the base of one of Europe's biggest extreme-right parties.
The league has called for Arabic to become an official Belgian language, argued against the integration of immigrants into Belgian society and sent out squads with video cameras to look for alleged racist police brutality.
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