Ref: 45/2006

Date:  29 May 2006

Time: 11:00 GMT 


PCHR Condemns the Attempted Abduction of Ashraf Nasrallah in Gaza

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) strongly condemns the attempted abduction of its employee Ashraf Nasrallah (lawyer) by gunmen near the court compound in Gaza City.  This crime is yet another episode in the security chaos currently plaguing the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT).

PCHR’s preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 12:15 on Sunday, 28 May 2006, a number of gunmen traveling in a white car intercepted Ashraf, a 34-year-old resident of the Rimal area of Gaza City and a lawyer at the Centre, as he was leaving the court compound in Wahda Street, Gaza City.  Three gunmen walked up to Ashraf and, at gunpoint, told him to come with them.  He refused to comply with the demand, however.  One of the gunmen then entered Ashraf’s car and told him to drive and follow his instructions.  Ashraf refused to comply with the second demand also.  The traffic rush and the gathering of people in the area forced the gunmen to leave the scene.  Before leaving, however, one of the gunmen fired at Ashraf.  The bullet missed him and hit the front of his car.  Ashraf submitted a complaint to the Abbas Police Station and an investigation was launched.

PCHR is extremely concerned over the attempted kidnapping of Ashraf and the subsequent shooting attempt.  The Centre calls upon the Palestinian National Authority, represented by the Attorney-General, to investigate this attack and to bring the perpetrators to justice.