[Pnews] Palestinian Human Rights and Civil Society Warn the International Community of Collective Punishment and Retaliatory Measures Against Prisoners

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Sep 9 10:22:08 EDT 2021

addameer.org <https://www.addameer.org/news/4495> Palestinian Human Rights
and Civil Society Warn the International Community of Collective Punishment
and Retaliatory Measures by the Israeli Occupation Authorities
September 9, 2021


Immediately following the escape of six Palestinian political prisoners
from the high-security Gilboa Prison, on 6 September 2021, Israeli Prison
Services (IPS) and occupying forces (IOF) began instituting a series of
collective, punitive, retaliatory, and arbitrary measures against
Palestinian political prisoners incarcerated in Israeli prisons, over 4,700
prisoners, and targeting Palestinian protected persons residing in the
occupied Palestinian territory.

The gross collective penalties include, *inter alia*, the mass forcible
transfer and interrogation of prisoners, the lockdown of all Israeli prison
sections holding Palestinian political prisoners and the institution of
arbitrary reprisals and punitive measures, the erection of increased
arbitrary checkpoints throughout the oPt, violent raids by IOF on
Palestinian towns and villages, and the assault, arbitrary detention, and
interrogation against family members of the escaped prisoners. Most
prominently, such measures violate the absolute prohibition of collective
punishment in international humanitarian law and *jus cogens*, most clearly
enshrined in Article 33(1) of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

In light of escalating reprisals, the Palestinian Human Rights Organization
Council,[1] the Palestinian NGO Network,[2] the Palestinian Commission for
Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club, and
Inaash Al-Ausurah Association submitted a joint urgent appeal on 9
September 2021 to UN Special Procedures expressing grave concern regarding
the collective punishment of all Palestinian prisoners and protected
persons; urging third-party intervention.

The joint urgent appeal further reiterated Addameer’s call, in a letter
sent to the head mission of the International Committee of the Red Cross
(ICRC) in Jerusalem on 7 September 2021 <https://www.addameer.org/news/4488>,
on the ICRC to monitor the transfer of the remaining Palestinian prisoners
in Gilboa Prison, and follow up with the relevant occupying authorities to
provide information confirming the location of the transferred prisoners,
as well as to inform the prisoners’ relatives of their whereabouts. In the
latter, Addameer further called upon the ICRC to safeguard the rights of
all Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons from arbitrary,
retaliatory, and collective punishment.

Furthermore, on 9 September 2021, the above-mentioned organizations sent
letters to relevant State parties warning that in the absence of
third-party supervision of IPS policies, the rights of Palestinian
prisoners will continue to be violated with impunity, and the gravity of
the situation will only increase. The letters further called on State
parties to fulfill their obligations as High Contracting Parties to the
Fourth Geneva Convention towards protecting human rights and enforcing the
implementation of international humanitarian law.

See attached joint urgent appeal to the UN Special Procedures.


[1] Comprising of 11 Palestinian human rights organizations, including Addameer
Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association Al Haq, Law in the Service of
Mankind, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, Palestinian Centre for Human
Rights, DCI - Defense for Children International – Palestine, Jerusalem
Legal Aid, and Human Rights Center, Aldameer Association for Human Rights,
Ramallah Center for Human Rights Studies, Hurriyat - Center for Defense of
Liberties and Civil Rights, The Independent Commission for Human Rights
(Ombudsman Office ) - Observer Member, and Muwatin Institute for Democracy
and Human Rights - Observer Member

[2] A network of 142 Palestinian civil society organizations
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