New arbitrary measures against Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails:
Three detainees have been placed in administrative detention and a fourth deprived of contact with his lawyer
Date: 30 December 2002
Israeli occupying forces have maintained their arbitrary measures against Palestinian prisoners depriving them of their basic legal rights including access to legal consultation and their right to a fair trial. Recently, military orders of administrative detention for Palestinian civilians have sharply increased. These allow the detention of civilians without charge or trial indefinitely in renewable periods of three months. This kind of arrest is a clear violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War and other international human rights instruments.
At present, hundreds of Palestinians are held in administrative detention in Israeli jails. In the past few days, Israeli occupying forces have placed three Palestinians from the Gaza Strip in administrative detention. On the 17 December 2002, the commander of the Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip issued a military order that placed Mohammed Rasmi Abu Qassem, 20, from Deir al-Balah, in a three-month administrative detention that ends on 16 March 2003. Abu Qassem was arrested at his house on 17 December 2002 during an Israeli incursion into his area. His father, Rasmi al-Sayed Abu Qassem was also arrested with him, but he was released on the 24 December 2002 without having been accused of any charge.
On the 26 December 2002, the commander of Israeli occupying forces in the Gaza Strip issued a military order that placed Mohammed Shahin Hussein ‘Abdul Jawad, 25, from Deir al-Balah, in a three-month administrative detention that ends on 25 March 2003. ‘Abdul Jawad was arrested at his house during an Israeli incursion into Deir al-Balah on 20 December 2002. Two of his brothers were also arrested with him, but they were later released.
Also on the 26 December 2002, the commander of the Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip issued a military order that placed ‘Ali Mohammed ‘Ouda al-Hamidi, 18, from Deir al-Balah, in a three-month administrative detention that ends on the 25 March 2003. Al-Hamidi was arrested by Israeli occupying forces at his house on the 21 December 2002.
At another level, Israeli forces have prevented PCHR lawyers from making any contact with Ra’ed Jamal al-Haddad, 21, from Gaza, who has been detained for the fourth consecutive week. PCHR is concerned that al-Haddad has been tortured during interrogation. Al-Haddad was arrested by Israeli forces at Rafah Terminal on the 5 December 2002, while on his way back to the Gaza Strip from Egypt. In its response to an appeal submitted by al-Haddad’s lawyer on the 26 December 2002, the Israeli High Court approved the decision of Israeli occupying forces to prevent his lawyer from visiting him until 3 January 2003.
PCHR is deeply concerned about the sharp escalation in the policy of administrative detention against Palestinians without any charge. PCHR condemns the Israeli High Court’s collusion with Israeli occupying forces in legalizing their violations, through approving the prevention of contact between detainees and their lawyers. PCHR is worried that these detainees may be tortured during interrogation.