[Ppnews] The Military Prosecution Continues to Deny Investigations of Israeli Army and Police Torture

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Jun 20 13:14:38 EDT 2013

  The Military Prosecution Continues to Deny Investigations of Israeli
  Army and Police Torture

20 June 2013, Ramallah

In light of recent developments in the case of Mohammad Halabiyeh, a 
child who was brutally tortured during interrogation in 2010, Addameer 
Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association reconfirms the 
Occupation's policy to deny genuine investigations into cases where the 
Israeli army has violated the fundamental rights of Palestinian prisoners.
Mohammad was 16 years old when he was arrested by the Israeli Border 
Police on 6 February 2010 from his hometown of Abu Dis, just outside of 
Jerusalem. During the arrest, Mohammad broke his leg and required urgent 
medical treatment. Instead of providing him with the necessary care, the 
Israeli Border Police held him for five days in interrogation and 
tortured him, including beating him, kicking him on his injured leg and 
threatening him with sexual abuse. When he was taken to a hospital, the 
interrogators continued to abuse Mohammad, punching him in the face, 
taping his mouth shut and beating him with an iron bar. (For more 
information on the circumstances of his arrest and torture, please visit 
Mohammad's prisoner profile <http://www.addameer.org/etemplate.php?id=335>.)
In response to this gruesome ill-treatment and torture of a child, 
Addameer lodged a complaint to the military prosecution as well as the 
General Legal Advisor for the Israeli government on 13 April 2010 to 
investigate the blatant torture of a child prisoner and hold the 
necessary authorities responsible. Addameer received response on 18 
April 2010 that the complaint was indeed received, but despite several 
follow-ups and attempts to reach a conclusion in the complaint, Addameer 
did not receive a response to our complaint until 18 June 2013, 3 years 
and 2 months after the initial complaint was lodged and the prisoner was 
already released. In the prosecutions response to Addameer's complaint, 
they closed the file without any investigation or acknowledgement of the 
torture the child endured, but instead moved the file to the Israeli 
Border Police to investigate instead. From the Legal Advisor's office, 
we received a response on 10 February 2011 that our complaint was 
referred to the special unit to investigate the police and the military 
prosecution. After over 3 years without any investigations opened on 
such a blatant case of torture, it is clear that the Occupation 
Authorities are refusing to hold accountable those who violated 
Mohammad's rights.
Mohammad was on trial for over a year before being sentenced to 34 
months for alleged throwing of Molotov cocktails. Mohammad served his 
sentence and was released before the investigation of his torture was 
acted upon in any capacity. Mohammad Halabiyeh's case is a prime example 
of the investigative bodies abusing their authority to cause delays and 
insufficient investigations in cases of human rights violations.
According to research by the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel, 
all 700 complaints of torture made against interrogators in the past 10 
years were closed without a criminal investigation. Additionally, many 
Palestinians who are tortured refuse to file complaints because of their 
lack of confidence in the system. This is not only a display of apathy 
towards the well-being of Palestinians, but also exposes the absolute 
impunity the Occupation authorities practices in direct violation of 
international human rights and humanitarian law. To date, 73 Palestinian 
detainees have died from torture at the hands of their interrogators 
since 1967, most recently Arafat Jaradat, a young father who was 
detained for 7 days before he was martyred in the interrogation cells on 
23 January 2013.
Addameer calls upon international stakeholders, including the United 
Nations, European Union, human rights organizations, consulates and 
embassies to exert pressure on Israel so they change their practices 
that violate human rights and international law.
The lack of internal investigations for such grave human rights 
violations confirms the importance of third states to act upon their 
responsibilities as described by Articles 146 and 147 of the 4^th Geneva 
Convention to hold perpetrators of torture accountable. Addameer calls 
on these third states to act on these responsibilities to end Israel's 
Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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