14 November 2021
ICHR statement on Hebron events
The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) views with grave concern the recurrence of disorder and rampant insecurity after a fight between the Al-Ja’bari and Al-Uweiwi families was renewed against the backdrop of an old family vendetta, which resulted in the killing of Izz al-Deen al-Uweiwi in 2006 and Basel al-Ja’bari on 27 July 2021.
According to the ICHR documentation, the fight recurred over the past two days, triggering clashes that involved firearms and machine guns in several quarters across the city. Meantime, commercial premises were set on fire. Fire was also opened on homes, intimidating peaceful citizens, both inside and outside the city. These homes belonged to both families as well as others.
Embedded in deep-rooted social contexts and cantering on values of vengeance and principle of action and reaction, these regrettable events must be brought to an end. They seriously jeopardise social fabric and community safety in both the city and Palestine in its entirety. These offences also undermine citizens’ fundamental rights and freedoms, cause the destruction of properties, and are a disavowal of the principle of the rule of law, and legitimise collective punishment by taking the law into one’s own hand.
The fact that the persons responsible for previous incidents, which led to the murder Al-Uweiwi and consequent killing of Al-Ja’bari and so-called Forat ad-Damm (venting of anger) are all major causes that have prompted the recurrence of this family fight.
Against this background, without diminishing the role of the Israeli occupying authorities in facilitating access to and possession of weapons and providing a safe haven to some outlaws, the ICHR calls on the Prime Minister, in his capacity as the Minister of Interior, to:
- Take necessary procedures and measures as rapidly as possible to protect the lives, ensure the personal safety and security, and maintain properties of citizens.
- Take expedited action to enforce the principle of the rule of law in a fair and equitable manner and without discrimination against any persons who undermine community safety and commit any offences that are punishable by law. Uncompromisingly, the rule of law must be applied no matter what the offences are, regardless of their source, or the persons who commit them.
- Prevent the proliferation of weapons, confiscate all illegal firearms, and bring persons charged with the possession and use of these weapons to justice.