ADDAMEER : Annual Violations Report of Palestinian Prisoners’ Rights in Israeli Prisons 2015
Ce rapport examine les violations commises par les forces d’occupation israéliennes et les services de la prison israélienne contre les Palestiniens prisonniers et détenus pendant les différentes étapes de leur arrestation et de leur détention en 2015, y compris les violations commises après le soulèvement populaire d’octobre. (publié le 29 November 2016)
Conclusion and Findings (page 89)
- The report shows the widespread systematic use of physical and mental torture, as well as degrading treatment by the Israeli occupation as a repressive measure against Palestinian prisoners since their arrest and throughout interrogation. The occupation provides a political cover for its actions, supported by the Israeli judicial institutions and the public opinion. The actions constitute violations of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment ratified by Israel in 1991.
- The report demonstrated the Israeli forces’ deliberate use of excessive force during arrests in 2015. Excessive force included the use of live ammunition against detainees, which worsened the detention conditions and resulted in the rising number of injured prisoners.
- The report documents war crimes committed by the Israeli occupation after reinstating a field executions policy and targeting Palestinians of all backgrounds. The number of Palestinians killed in the last three months of 2015 reached 145, constituting a war crime according to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
- The Israeli military courts continue to deny fair trial guarantees to Palestinian prisoners and detainees using discriminatory legislation aiming to imprison the largest possible number of Palestinians. The report clearly uncovers an official Israeli institutionalized push towards a unified far-right policy to criminalize Palestinians for nationalist ideology, adopting the pretext of “security circumstances” as a justifcation for its policies, laws, and actions.
- The report observed a surge in arrests for posts on social media platforms, mainly Facebook, and documented several similar cases. Israel started arresting Palestinians for online posts since the start of 2014, in violation of international conventions and national laws that guarantee freedom of expression.
- Administrative detention continues in 2015 against members of the Palestinian society, including five women, five children, as well as a number of human rights defenders that included lawyers, journalists, and members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. The number of detainees held in punitive and arbitrary administrative detention doubled in the last three months of 2015, breaching Article 78 of the Geneva Convention.
- Three Jerusalem children were held in administrative detention for the first time since 1967, setting a dangerous precedent that threatens most of Jerusalem children with arbitrary arrest without charge or trial.
- Palestinian prisoners and detainees resorted to hunger strike in protest of administrative detention. Five administrative detainees underwent a mass hunger strike, in addition to several individual cases of hunger strike, against detention without charge or trial.
- The report documented the deteriorating conditions in Israeli prisons in 2015, including repeated raids, torture and humiliation, medical neglect, as well as the Israeli Prison Service’s deliberate actions to maintain the meager conditions of prison clinics that do not meet the bare minimum medical care standards. Israel continues to breach international conventions and norms by enforcing solitary confinement with ten prisoners placed in solitary confinement and isolation in 2015. Moreover, prisoners are deprived of their rights to family visits. These policies are part of the Israeli efforts to weaken and render futile the Palestinian Prisoners Movement’s efforts in exercising their rights.
- The report highlighted Israel’s escalatory policies targeting women and children. The policies are part of a comprehensive process to deconstruct the Palestinian social fabric and youth, in a complete disregard to the specificity of the women and children’s situations in relevant international conventions and agreements.
- The report dedicated a special section to cover arrests in Jerusalem, in particular the Israeli occupation’s treatment of minors during arrest and interrogation, trial procedures, high sentences for throwing stones and Molotov cocktails offences, house arrests, as well as hefty fines and bails.
- Addameer believes that the division among the Palestinian national factions highly affected the conditions of the Prisoner’s Movement, and further weakened the prisoners’ positions amid the Israeli Prison Service’ continued efforts to shirk responsibilities towards them and break their spirits. Addameer urges the Palestinian Authority and all Palestinian factions to join efforts to establish a unified strategic vision that enables and strengthens the Prisoners Movement in the face of the Israeli occupation’s systems and institutions.
- Addameer believes of utmost necessity that the Israeli occupation be legally pursued for its crimes against the Palestinian people, the administrative detention be included in the definition of torture, and the prisoners’ issue be raised in the International Criminal Court (ICC). Addameer deems fundamental the international criminalization of the Israeli war crimes that included the extrajudicial executions of dozens of Palestinians in 2015, as well as the internationally-forbidden collective punishment policies exercised against the Palestinian people, particularly the families of Palestinians who were killed and detained by the occupation. Such policies included retaliatory searches and demolitions of family households, as well arrests of family members.
- Addameer highlights the need for an official Palestinian stand regarding the Israeli retention of Palestinian bodies as a top priority national concern that exceeds family members.
- Addameer recommends the United Nations, its committees and rights organizations, to pursue immediate and earnest efforts to provide protection for the Palestinian prisoners and detainees in Israeli prisons. The protection is aimed particularly against willful killings during arrest, torture during arrest and interrogation, Israeli Prison Service Special Forces’ crimes in prisons, and medical neglect.
- Addameer recommends the Palestinian Commission on Prisoners’ Affairs, and Palestinian rights and legal organization unify and intensify efforts to expose the Israeli occupation and Prison Service crimes. Addameer also recommends to utilize national and international laws to le complaints against the Israeli occupation and hold it accountable for its actions.