13 December 2022
ICHR demands that West Bank security agencies cease campaign of summons service and detention of student and political activists
The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) denounces the campaign launched by security agencies in the West Bank to serve summonses to and detain political activists and university students, particularly those affiliated with the Islamic Bloc and Hamas movement. With the advent of Hamas’ anniversary, the security campaign reflects an attempt to prevent and restrict celebrations of the occasion. According to the ICHR documentation, over the past few days, summonses have been served to dozens of political and student activists. A number of these activists were detained for varying periods. As at the time of reporting, at least 30 persons have still been held in custody. Of note, summons service and detentions continue to be in place, mostly in the Ramallah, Bethlehem, and Hebron governorates.
The ICHR also views with deep concern the way some arrests were carried out. These have involved excessive use of force, intimidation, and ill-treatment of the families of detained persons. This requires that an investigation be opened into these cases, particularly the assault on Ms. Ranin al-Hor, when her brother and father were arrested in the Surif town, north of Hebron.
Considering that these measures constitute a grave violation of the rights to freedom of expression, political action, and peaceful assembly, the ICHR demands that all detained persons be immediately released and the summons service campaign be brought to an end. Worth of note, on Monday and Tuesday, ICHR researchers visited a number of detained persons, observed their detention condition, and learned about actions taken against them.