ICHR calls on security agencies to support citizens’ perseverance and demands an investigation into Hebron events

ICHR calls on security agencies to support citizens’ perseverance and demands an investigation into Hebron events

The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) is following up on and documenting the Israeli encroachments and crimes against the Palestinian people across the occupied Palestinian territory in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip. These violations have included extrajudicial killings, closure of the West Bank, raids on homes and commercial premises, and continued arrests of hundreds of Palestinians, including members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Abuses are compounded by Israeli settler attacks, restriction of access, racist campaigns, and incitement to kill Palestinians and President Mahmoud Abbas.

This Israeli campaign requires that all Palestinians, including citizens, factions, leadership and security agencies, stand as one bloc against these Israeli violations, maintain our national unity and principled values, protect citizens’ rights, allow citizens to express their opinions, and support them in confronting attacks by every available means.

The ICHR condemns the unfortunate events that took place in the cities of Nablus and Hebron. Security agencies used force to disperse a demonstration on the Al-Sa’ah roundabout in Nablus city. Security personnel also assailed protestors in a peaceful march in Hebron city, injuring a number of citizens. Some protestors were arrested, but released at a later time. Others are still in custody.

According to the ICHR documentation, in Hebron, security agencies attacked a peaceful demonstration organised by Hamas on the occasion of the movement’s anniversary in front of Al-Hussein Mosque. Security personnel in civilian clothes and military uniforms surrounded the mosque and prevented citizens from reaching the area and participating in the demonstration. Security forces dispersed the demonstration by force and assaulted participants, including women, with batons, leaving a number of citizens with injuries. Many wounded citizens were transported to hospital for medical treatment. In addition, several citizens, including children, were arrested. Some of these were released later.

While it emphasises the gravity and delicacy of the situation of our just cause, which necessitates national cohesion and the primacy of the language of dialogue, the ICHR calls for:

  1. Immediately releasing all detainees, and respecting citizens’ right to freedom of peaceful assembly and right to freedom of expression.

  2. Complying with the recommendations of the independent fact finding committee, established by the Prime Minister in March 2017, to investigate the attacks on protestors in front of the court complex in the city of El-Bireh. Jeopardising community safety, security personnel dressed in civilian clothes may not deal with peaceful assemblies.

  3. Opening an independent, serious and prompt investigation to determine and hold to account the officers responsible for persecuting the demonstration in Hebron.

  4. Launching an inclusive national dialogue as soon as possible to confront Israeli measures, identify ways to promote the perseverance of our people against the occupation and its oppressive measures, reduce internal tension, and gear all efforts to combat Israeli crimes.