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(en) Wide Spread Arrest Campaign and House Raids Continue

From "Addameer" <addameer@planet.edu>
Date Sat, 16 Dec 2000 13:52:46 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

Tuesday, 12 December 2000
Press Release

Wide Spread Arrest Campaign and House Raids Continue

A wide spread arrest campaign by the Israeli Occupation 
Authorities, initiated from the beginning of the recent Intifada, has 
escalated during the past weeks.  While the arrest campaign was 
originally focused on detaining Palestinians accused of 
participating in recent events at Israeli checkpoints throughout the 
West Bank and Gaza, it is now characterized by systematic raids 
on houses of Palestinians residing in areas under full Israeli control 
(Area C) and within Jerusalem.

House raids on Palestinian homes have been regularly conducted 
by large groups of Israeli military forces and special masked 
military units and are primarily taking place after midnight.  In most 
cases, trained police dogs are sent into the homes before the 
military forces storm the house, as in the case in Beit Fourik near 
Nablus and Al Mughayer near Ramallah.

Instances of arrest are not only taking place at checkpoints and 
crossing in the West Bank and Gaza, but also within the 
Palestinian villages, including Beit Fourik, Al Mughayer, Ras 
Karkar, Beit Dajan, Salem, 'Arroub Refugee Camp, Senjil and 
areas of occupied Jerusalem, in addition to other areas.

In one case in Beit Fourik, the Israeli military authorities forced 
Palestinian citizen Sajed Mleitat to undress completely outside his 
home, after which searchlights were directed towards him, before 
he was arrested and subsequently transferred to administrative 
detention and then moved to interrogation three days later.

A great number of Palestinians have been arrested during these 
raids and arrest campaigns, including the following:

1. Nael Al Haj Mohammad from Beit Fourik; 
2. Hassaan Ishtaieh, 32 years old from Salem;
3. Mohammad Al Bes, 18 years old from Aroub Refugee Camp;
4. Hamed Khader Abu I'layah, 21 years old from Al Mughayer
5. As'ad Jaber Abu I'layah, 18 years old from Al Mughayer;
6. Sulaiman Al Fuqaha, 30 years old from Senjil;
7. Khaled Masaalmah, 35 years old from Senjil;
8. Mohammad Kayed, 46 years from Senjil.

Many of the detainees are being severely beaten and kicked during 
their arrest by Israeli military forces, as in the case of Mohammad 
Ali Ibrahim Al Bes from 'Arroub Refugee Camp.  Al Bes was 
severely beaten with the back of a gun, continuously kicked, 
soaked with extremely cold water and dragged along the ground by 
Israeli soldiers during his arrest in the early morning hours of 
Tuesday, 12 December 2000.

Addameer Prisoners' Support and Human Rights Association has 
been monitoring the recent house raids and arrest campaigns and 
has documented these most common phenomena that accompany 

*  Raids on Palestinian homes usually occur after midnight and end 
before daylight, conducted by a large number of military forces and 
special units.
*  All targeted neighborhoods and homes are surrounded at exactly 
the same time throughout the entire village.
*  Trained police dogs are used in searching homes before the 
Israeli military forces enter the house, as was the case in both Beit 
Fourik and Al Mughayer.
*  Israeli military forces intentionally cause damage to houses and 
property, such as turning over and destroying furniture, breaking 
glass and kitchen items, as was the case in raids on Ras Karkar, 
Senjil, Salem, Beit Fourik and Al Mughayer.
*  Directing bright searchlights at detainees and forcing them to 
undress for body searches from a distance, as in the case of Sajed 
Abdel Latif Mleitat from Beit Fourik.
*  Forcing residents to evacuate their houses (families of those 
being arrested) and families of their relatives and neighbors who 
happen to reside in neighboring houses, forcing them to stand in 
the cold and sometimes in the rain for several hours while homes 
are being raided and searched.  In a number of cases, the families 
of those being detained have been locked in one of the rooms of 
the house while soldiers search the rest of the house and beat the 
detainee, as in the case of Mohammd Al Bes.

Arrest campaigns target Palestinians of all ages, including 
children, youth and the elderly, as in the case of 70 year old Khalil 
Isa Ismail As'ad from Bethlehem, who was arrested at the crossing 
point with Jordan while on his way to visit his sons and relatives.  
Khalil As'ad has been detained at the Muscobiyeh Interrogation 
Center (Russian Compound) since 26 November 2000 and has 
been denied family visits since the time of his arrest. Addameer's 
lawyer Adv. Sahar Fransis has been repeatedly denied visits to 
Khalil since his arrest, with a prevention order prohibiting both 
family visits and legal counsel.

Addameer has taken on more than 45 cases of Palestinian 
detainees under interrogation. During the follow up of these cases, 
meetings with several detainees and visits by Addameer's lawyer to 
interrogation centers, it was discovered that despite the Israeli High 
Court's ruling of September 1999 banning the use of torture during 
interrogation, Palestinian detainees are still being subjected to 
torture during interrogation.  Nu'man Hamoudeh who is being 
detained at the 'Asqalaan interrogation center, was subjected to 
more than one session of interrogation a day and is being put in 
Shabeh (position abuse) position on a very low chair while his 
hands are cuffed to the seat of the chair for extended periods of 

The majority of Palestinian detainees have been denied legal 
counsel, many for over fifteen consecutive days, and isolated from 
other detainees in their cells, as in the case of Khalil As'ad.  In 
addition, detainees are being placed in collaborator cells, where 
they are forced to admit to charges against them through the use 
of severe beatings, death threats and other forms of pressure.

Health Conditions
Addameer Prisoners' Support and Human Rights Association is 
gravely concerned about the continuous and intentional neglect of 
detainees health conditions and the lack of adequate provision of 
health care by the prison administration and prison hospitals.

Many detainees are in need of immediate medical treatment and 
regular health care, such as in the case of Palestinian detainees 
Khaled Masalmeh, who suffers from blood pressure problems, and 
Mohammad Kayed, who suffers from severe breathing difficulties.

While some detainees are suffering from the lack of immediate 
medical treatment, others are in need of surgery, such as Amin 
Mohammad Ghazi Al Aghbar, who is detained in Al Ramleh Prison 
hospital.  Al Aghbar is currently suffering serious heart problems 
and has required surgery for the last two years, but has been 
continuously denied it.

Palestinian detainees have requested that specialized physicians 
(Eyes, Nose, Ears and Oral, Skin, Teeth, Bones, etc.) visit 
detainees as many are suffering from specific diseases.  However, 
these requests have been denied and all detainees are brought 
before a general physician, regardless of the type of illness.

Denial of Family Visits
The Israeli authorities have continued to prevent family visits to 
Palestinian detainees since the beginning of clashes on 29 
September 2000.  The negative psychological effects on both 
detainees and their families, in particular during this difficult period 
and in light of the escalation of violence in the occupied territories, 
is increasingly evident as detainees are subsequently isolated from 
their families.  Basic necessities usually provided by family 
members are also being prevented from entering prisons.  
Palestinian detainees have rejected suggestions by the Israeli 
military and prisons' authorities to allow family visits limited to only 
parents, wives and children under ten and to limit visit permits to 
one day only, in addition to preventing family members from 
bringing basic necessities to detainees.

Lack of Food Stuff
Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons are suffering from a severe 
decrease in food items allowed to prisoners since the beginning of 
clashes on 29 September.  The situation has reached a critical 
point as the Israeli authorities have unilaterally prevented any 
organizations, including the International Committee of the Red 
Cross, from bringing in basic food items. At least 45% of 
Palestinian detainees' food intake is reliant upon items brought in 
by family members and other organizations and associations.

Addameer Prisoners' Support and Human Rights Association 
considers that the ongoing arrest campaign and raids on 
Palestinian homes, accompanied by severe 
damage to property and severe beating of detainees, represents an unacceptable 
violation added to  all other violations being practiced against the 
Palestinian people by the Israeli occupation forces.   In the light of this, 
Addameer demands:

1.  An immediate halt to torture being practiced during the arrest 
and interrogation of Palestinians;
2.  An immediate halt to the prevention of family visits to detainees 
and the lifting of bans against legal counsel.
3.  The intervention of the international community to demand that 
Israel immediately ceases all violations and collective punishment 
against Palestinian civilians.
4.  Israel abide with all international agreements and laws, 
particularly those related to international human rights protection.
ADDAMEER - Prisoners' Support and Human Rights Association
PO Box: 17338, Jerusalem.
Ramallah, West Bank.
Tel: +972-2-2960446 Fax: +972-2-2960447
E-mail: addameer@planet.edu
URL: http://www.addameer.org/

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