In Letter to General Intelligence Service, ICHR Demands Immediate Release of Five Journalists



In  Letter  to General Intelligence Service, ICHR  Demands Immediate Release of Five Journalists

               Ramallah-  The  Independent Commission  for Human Rights( ICHR)  called  today for immediate and unconditional  release of five journalists,  arrested  by  the General Intelligence Service,  and asked  to stop persecution of journalists for journalistic work and  not to bring journalistic  work into  political  disputes. In its letter  to the General Intelligence Service, ICHR said, “ The arrest of  journalists is  a serious blow  to freedom of  opinion and expression and a violation of their rights and the understandings  agreed upon between the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate and the Public Prosecution.”  

ICHR is following  up closely the  arrest of the five journalists: Mr. Ahmed  Halaika, Mr. Tariq Abu Zayd, Mr. Qutaiba Qasim,  Mr. Mamdouh Hamamreh and Amer Abu Arafa. It stresses that it is  a serious    human rights abuse. 

ICHR  is still  also following up  the detention of Palestinian journalist Mr. Fuad Jaradeh, arrested on June 8, by the Internal Security Service in the Gaza Strip, on military  justice pre-trial detention,  on suspicion of collaborating with PA authorities in Ramallah. ICHR has  written  to  the  concerned authorities in the Gaza Strip and demanded his  immediate release.

As a  monitoring organization of human rights abuses in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip,  ICHR has seen  recently   a  serious  regression in the conditions and liberties and freedom of journalistic work in the  two Palestinian areas. This  can be seen in the issuance of E-Crime Law # 16,  an upsurge  in  arrests and detention  of  journalists against the background of their  work in the mass media and blocking access to  websites.