The Israeli military has implemented positive developments in its juvenile court system in recent years, and yet, regular allegations of serious abuses persist. A look at what has been done and what still needs to take place. By Gerard Horton Since the establishment of Israel’s military juvenile court in September 2009, there have been some noteworthy developments in the way children as young as 12 are treated in Israel’s military legal system. The establishment of the court has led to several changes, including: a reduction in the time in which children must be brought before a military court judge for…Read More... | 1 Comment
A UNICEF report indicates a measurable deterioration in the treatment of Palestinian children held in Israeli military detention in the months since the UN organization recommended serious changes. By Gerard Horton In March 2013, UNICEF published a report – Children in Israeli Military Detention. The report’s main finding was that the ill-treatment of children who come in contact with the military detention system appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalized throughout the process. In response to these findings, the Israeli Foreign Ministry stated it would study the conclusions and work to implement the 38 recommendations through ongoing cooperation with UNICEF. Read +972′s…Read More... | 2 Comments
Since 1967, Israel has issued 1,700 military orders and between 750,000-800,000 Palestinian men, women and children have been prosecuted in Israeli military courts and imprisoned. Technically speaking, Israeli military law applies to all persons in the West Bank, whether they be Palestinian or Israeli, but in practice civilian law is applied to the settlers, whereas military law, with far fewer rights and protections, is reserved for Palestinians, giving rise to a situation of unlawful discrimination. Read: The bottom line is equal rights for all The following report, prepared by Military Court Watch, showcases the Israeli occupation's legal discrimination, as it affects…Read More... | 1 Comment
Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem is laying the blame on Israel's police for ignoring the systematic abuse and violations of Palestinian minors’ rights during interrogations. The organization has received dozens of complaints by Palestinian residents under the age of 18 who have been beaten and threatened during interrogations in Etzion police station, which is in charge of the Hebron and Bethlehem areas. Many of those minors and their families were afraid or reluctant to press formal charges. According to B’Tselem, some of the events described included torture. Once defendants admit to breaking the law (usually stone throwing), the beating and…Read More... | 9 Comments
Unlike Prisoner X, there is no public outrage in Israel over the way the legal system is preventing Samer Issawi from receiving a fair trial. But then again, Issawi is Palestinian. Samer Issawi, the Palestinian prisoner who has been on an intermittent hunger strike for over 200 days, had his day in court on Thursday. According to the sentence handed down by the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court, one might ostensibly believe that Issawi would be released on March 6, when his prison term is completed. But Samer Issawi is Palestinian, and therefore subject to a multi-layered legal system in which his…Read More... | 10 Comments
A new report by Human Rights Watch documents human rights violations by the Hamas authority in Gaza. Many of the violations of prisoners rights were committed against Fatah members, sometimes in 'retaliation' for the persecution of Hamas members in the West Bank. Human Rights Watch issued last week an important report on Hamas-run courts in Gaza. +972 posted the report in its entirely yesterday. You can read it in PDF format here. HRW interviewed 15 people, including inmates and lawyers who have been tortured by Hamas security forces. Altogether, there have been 112 complaints of torture of Palestinians in Gaza during 2011. As…Read More... | 7 Comments
Comments from IDF Spokesperson regarding the Hebron incident proven false. Last month, Mairav Zonszein posted a video showing a young Palestinian being assaulted and detained by a group of soldiers, most of them in civilian clothing. The incident happened at checkpoint 56 in the Tel Rumeida neighborhood of Hebron. After several Hebrew media outlets featured the clip, the IDF Spokesperson released the following comment: The video does not accurately depict the course of events that occurred yesterday. During routine activity in Hebron, a Palestinian individual refused to identify himself to soldiers following their request. The Palestinian individual confronted IDF forces on the scene,…Read More... | 5 Comments
The following booklet, published by Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, encompasses a series of reflections by Addameer volunteers and associates who visited Israeli military courts in occupied Palestinian territory between 2009 and 2011. The contributors witnessed hearings for Palestinians accused of stone-throwing, involvement in demonstrations and other political activities deemed an offense according to Israeli military regulations. Eyes on Israeli Military Court- Impressions ADDAMEER (Arabic for conscience) Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association is a Palestinian non-governmental, civil institution that works to support Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli and Palestinian prisons. Established in 1992 by a group of…Read More...
In a piece recently published, Israel's Ambassador to Washington Michael Oren rejected claims regarding anti-democratic trends in his country, and compared the legal status of Palestinians in the West Bank to that of American citizens in Washington DC and the U.S. territories. A response. When Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu appointed Professor Michael Oren - a historian and researcher at the conservative Shalem institute, author of a popular book on the 1967 war - as his ambassador to Washington, he was probably hoping to capitalize on the latter's name-recognition and credibility, especially with the political establishment and the Jewish elites. And indeed,…Read More... | 32 Comments
Adnan is held for at least the 7th time in administrative arrest, a practice used at any given moment to detain hundreds of Palestinians. This is a translation (with slight changes) of an article published in Hebrew in my weekly column at TimeOut Tel Aviv The IDF's court of appeals rejected this week the motion of Khader Adnan, 33, a resident of the village Araba, against the four months of administrative arrest to which he was sentenced. It was the 59th day of Adnan's hunger strike. In an unusual manner, the court's hearing was held in Ziv Medical Center in…Read More... | 20 Comments
Khader Adnan's hunger strike reached its 52nd day with little international attention. Some might think this is due to his association with the Islamic Jihad. However, the Israeli military has not presented any formal charges against him. Adnan is one Palestinian prisoner among thousands, about whom little is known. In Israel, many simply brush away the issue of Palestinian prisoners by declaring them all to be terrorists. However, they may be surprised to learn that Khader Adnan has not been charged in court, but rather is presently in administrative detention. There are some 300 Palestinians in Israeli jails under administrative…Read More... | 31 Comments
By Sam Bahour My friend is Walid Abu Rass. He is the Finance and Administration Manager for the Health Work Committees (HWC), one of the largest community health service providers in the occupied Palestinian territory. HWC serves over 500,000 patients/beneficiaries per year! More on HWC in a second. I had not seen Walid for a while. We are both knee-deep in Palestine’s daily rat race. About two months ago, Walid and his HWC colleagues called for a meeting of their circle of friends. They sought assistance. HWC was going through some financial hard times, especially with the financial crisis in…Read More...
In a letter to the French-Palestine Solidarity Association, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé slams Israel for arresting and trying Bassem Tamimi in military court. Mr. Juppé states that "an official demarche has recently been delivered on his behalf to the Israeli authorities by the chief representative of the European Union delegation in Tel Aviv" Palestinian protest organizer Bassem Tamimi was arrested by the Israeli army last March, and has been in prison ever since. Tamimi, a father of four from Nabi Saleh, has been the target of the Israeli security forces since the beginning of the unarmed protest in his…Read More... | 5 Comments
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