Ref: 14/2013

 

The
Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) is deeply concerned about the
beating and detention of lawyer Ahmed al-Ejla by Palestinian police inside the
court compound in Gaza City on Thursday, 14 February 2013. PCHR calls upon the
Attorney General in Gaza to carry out a thorough investigation into this
serious assault and prosecute the perpetrators.

 

According to
investigations conducted by PCHR, on Thursday morning, 14 February 2013, lawyer
Ahmed Waleed al-Ejla, 25, was beaten and detained by Palestinian police
officers while he was in the court compound in Gaza City. Al-Ejla stated to
PCHR:

 

“At approximately 09:30 on Thursday, I saw a police
officer pushing an old man inside the court compound. I asked the police
officer to respect the old man and objected to his behaviour. A skirmish
erupted between him and me. Immediately, he called a number of other police
officers, and one of them informed me that I would be detained in the detention
facilities. While they were taking me to the detention facilities, two police
officers beat me, and one of them used his gun butt to hit me on the head, so I
sustained an injury. While I was detained, Dr. Abdullah Abu al-Sebeh, Minister
of Justice, members of the Bar Association, and the Chief of the Judicial
Police came and took me to the office of the Head of the Higher Judiciary
Council, where I was informed that an investigation would be opened into the
attack. I then went to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City to receive medical
treatment.”

 

In this
context, PCHR emphasizes the following:

 

1- Attacking, humiliating or threatening a
lawyer is a crime for which the perpetrator should be punished, and receive the
appropriate penalty for a crime committed against a member of a court jury, in
accordance with the Palestinian Law No. 3 of 1999 on the Organization of the
Legal Profession;

2- A lawyer cannot be detained or
prosecuted for any action he carries out for the purpose of fulfilling his
professional duties, rather, all necessary facilitations must be provided to
him and he must be treated in a way befitting the honour and ethics of the
legal profession in accordance with the above law; and

3- Detaining the above lawyer violated
Article 11 of the Palestinian Basic Law and the Criminal Procedures Law No. 3
of 2001.

 

 

Therefore:

 

1- PCHR calls upon the Attorney General to conduct
a thorough investigation into this assault and prosecute the perpetrators; and

2- PCHR calls upon the government in Gaza,
particularly the Ministry of Interior, to take strict measures to prevent
violations resulting from security officials’ misuse of their powers.