Ref: 86/2010 

 

The
Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns storming the house of Eng.
Abdul Rahman Zeidan, 50, Member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC)
from the Change and Reform Bloc, in Deir al-Ghsoun village north of Tulkarm, by
the Palestinian security services; in addition to transporting him to security
compound (
Mukata’a) in Tulkarm before he was released in the street,
wearing his night clothes.  This attack
is part of the ongoing arbitrary arrests carried out by security services
against dozens of political opponents, particularly Hamas members, and treating
them cruelly in the West Bank.  PCHR
calls upon the government in Ramallah to stop such illegal acts and completely
end political arrests.

 

According
to investigations conducted by PCHR and the testimony of Zeidan, at
approximately 01:00 on Tuesday, 21 September
2010, a joint force of the
security services and Palestinian police surrounded Zeidan’s house in Deir
al-Ghsoun village, north of Tulkarm.  The
joint force consisted of about 100 members, including 3 women, in 18 vehicles,
some of which belong to the police.  They
violently broke into the house after breaking the door, and started thoroughly
searching the contents of the house. 
Zeidan said that members of the force insisted on checking his wife and
three daughters aged between 10 and 19. 
Before they left the house, the security forces confiscated two laptops,
a mobile phone, all files and papers in the house, excluding identification
papers, cut wires of the telephone and TV, handcuffed him and transported him in
his night clothes to the security compound in Tulkarm.  He had been detained for 10 minutes, then
released at approximately 02:30 into the street, wearing his night clothes.

 

Zeidan stated
that storming his house, cruelly treating him and his family, and arresting him
are considered a message sent to him on the ground of his statements after the extra-judicial
execution of Eyad Abu Shilbaya by Israeli Occupation Forces in Nour Shams
refugee camp on 17 September 2010, as he talked about the Palestinian-Israeli
security coordination.

 

It should
be noted that PCHR’s team in the West Bank met a number of PLC Members from the
Change and Reform Bloc in the Bloc’s office in Nablus on 19 September
2010.  The meeting was attended by
Zeidan, as he mentioned that he received a phone call in the previous night
from a person, introducing himself as Director of the Preventing Security
Service (PSS) in Tulkarm and threatening Zeidan for his statements.

 

PCHR strongly
condemns storming and searching Zeidan’s house, transporting him to the
security compound in Tulkarm, and threats sent to him, and:

 

1) Stresses
that storming and searching Zeidan’s house constitute a flagrant violation of
article 22 of the Act of Duties and Rights of PLC Members # 10 of 2004, which
stipulates that:  "It is prohibited
to harm any member of the PLC in any way, and to search his/her belongings,
house, place of residence, car, office, or generally any of his/her property during
the period of immunity."

2) Zeidan’s
arrest took place following his political statements although he enjoys
diplomatic immunity; therefore, PCHR emphasizes that the right to freedom of opinion
and expression is guaranteed under the Palestinian basic law and international
human right standards;

3) Calls
upon the Attorney General in Ramallah to seriously investigate the attack,
prosecute the perpetrators and bring them to justice; and

4) Calls
upon the government in Ramallah and its security services to immediately stop
such acts, and comply with the Palestinian law and international human rights
standards.