PCHR Calls upon Attorney General to Investigate Two Torture Crimes in West Bank and Gaza
The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) is strongly concerned over the torture practiced against two arrestees by the security services in the West Bank and Gaza Strip during their detention. PCHR calls upon the Attorney General to investigate seriously both crimes and publish the investigation results in public in addition to holding those involved accountable and bringing them to fair trials, ensuring civilians in the detention facilities not being subject to bodily harm.
According to PCHR’s investigations, Suha Badran Jbarah (31), from Termes’aya village in Ramallah, was subject to torture and degrading treatment during her detention in Jericho. As a result, she declared hunger strike, which started on 22 November 2018 and still on, in protest against her detention circumstances and being subject to torture.
A joint force of intelligence service, preventive security and police arrested Jbarah, who is a mother of 3 children, after raiding her house in the afternoon on 03 November 2018. She was then taken to the Intelligence Service headquarter in al-Balou’ah area in Ramallah before being referred to Jericho Prison in the midnight when she was discharged from the hospital, to which she was referred in Ramallah after directly arresting her because she was traumatized and her heartbeats increased, noting that she suffers from heart problems. Badran Jbarah, the father of Suha, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that his daughter was taken handcuffed and accompanied only with male soldiers to the security service headquarter in Jericho. She underwent investigations as soon as she arrived for 72 hours consecutively, during which she was deprived of sleeping and beaten at the upper back and chest. She was also accused of “transferring money to families of prisoners and martyrs affiliated with Hamas Movement and collaborating with the Israel.” Badran also said that the interrogators claimed that they have photos of her in inappropriate positions with a man and threatened to publish them in case she did not confess and to arrest her father and brother. He added that they showed her prisoners who were subject to torture in order to terrorize her, rendering her in a state of spasm. Badran also said that his daughter told him when he visited her in the prison on 10 November that she was forced to refuse a request to meet lawyers and threatened of not being ever able to see her children all her life. He added that he saw torture marks on her body. On 22 November, Jbarah went on an open hunger strike, protesting against the circumstances of her detention and being subject to torture. She was immediately taken to the hospital before being referred to solitary confinement, punishing her for her strike.
On the other hand, on 06 December 2018, Hisham Darwish Matter (46), from Khan Younis, who has been arrested for 3 years and sentenced to 10 years in prison for undermining the revolutionary unity (communicating with Ramallah) was severely beaten up by the police officers in Asdaa’ Prison in western Khan Younis, including beating on his bare feet (falaka) and on head. As a result, symptoms of a clot appeared on him and he was so taken to the hospital to receive medical treatment.
According to his testimony to PCHR’s lawyer, Matter said that he argued with a police officer in Asdaa’ Prison in western Khan Younis, so the officer brought other officers who entered the room and started severely beating him. Matter also said to PCHR’s lawyer that he was punched and beaten with a plastic hose throughout his body in addition to being stonrlgy hit on his head; due to this he lost balance and fell on the ground unable to move. He was then detained in a single cell where his health condition deteriorated and he had trouble in speaking while his left hand paralyzed. Thus, they suspected he was having astroke, so he was taken to Dar al-Salam Hosptial in Khan Younis and underwent tests to be then referred to Naser Hospital in Khan Younis and be under observation for 48 hours. He was then taken back to the prison. PCHR’s lawyer, who visited him in the prison, emphasized that he recongnized the prisoner was unable to move his left hand and lost feeling in it. he added that the prisoner’s hand was bandaged to the shoulder and he could not move his left leg.
PCHR stresses that the Palestinian security services continue to practice torture and degrading treatment in the prisons and detention facilities in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Thus, PCHR:
- Calls upon the Attorney General to investigate seriously both torture crimes against Jbarah and Matter, publish the result in public and hold those involved accountable and bringing them to fair trials.
- Calls upon the Attorney General, Judiciary and Members of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) to fulfill their responsibilities of overseeing the prisons and detention facilities according to Articles (10) and (11) of the Correction and Rehabilitation Centers’ Law no. 6/1998, because many complaints were filed by civilians for being subject to torture there.