Ref: 174/2007

PCHR calls for an immediate investigation into the crime of abducting 3 residents of Gaza City, torturing them, and shooting them by unknown gunmen. The Centre stresses that this crime is a continuation of the security chaos plaguing the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT).

The Center’s preliminary investigation indicates that at approximately 23:45 on Monday, 3 December 2007, unknown gunmen abducted Ayman Wasfi El-Khodari (35-year old physician), Yusef Mohammad El-Nounou (24-year old owner of a mobile phone shop), and Nabil Ibrahim El-Nounou (33-year old taxi driver). The abductees were traveling in a vehicle near Ali Bin Abi Talib Mosque in Zaitoon Quarter at the time. They were taken to an undisclosed location. At approximately 19:00 on Thursday, 6 December, the gunmen released the abductees in Othman Bin Affan Street near the Gaza Municipality Park in central Gaza City. Then they fired at 2 of the freed abductees. Nabil El-Nounou was seriously injured by a bullet to the left foot; and Ayman El-Khodari was seriously injured by 2 bullets in the feet. Both were taken to Shifa Hospital where they are in the intensive care unit for treatment from the bullet wounds and torture.

One of the victims informed PCHR’s staff that the gunmen interrogated them about explosions in Gaza City, especially explosions in Asqoula area in the city. He added that he was tortured by being forced to stand for prolonged time and by beating with sticks, especially on the bottom of the feet. He also stated that he heard his colleagues screaming from torture.

PCHR strongly condemns the abduction, torture, and shooting of these victims, and calls upon the PNA, represented by the Attorney-General to seriously investigate these crimes and prosecute the perpetrators.