IOPT: PALESTINIAN LAWYER’S DETENTION EXTENDED

French-Palestinian lawyer Salah Hammouri remains held without charge or trial in Israel after suspending his 19-day-long hunger strike in protest at the renewal of his administrative detention. The human rights defender has faced persistent harassment by the Israeli authorities since 2002, including action to revoke his Jerusalem residency status and ongoing administrative detention since March 2022. He spent 15 days in solitary confinement in a dirty, small and windowless cell without contact with the outside world as punishment for going on hunger strike, together with 29 other Palestinian detainees. The Israeli authorities must immediately release Salah Hammouri unless he is promptly charged and ensure that he is allowed to keep his residency status in Jerusalem and continue his human rights work without fear of reprisals.

Salah Hammouri is a French-Palestinian lawyer who lives in the neighborhood of Kufr Aqab in East Jerusalem. He holds a Jerusalem residency permit and works as a field researcher for Addameer, a legal aid and prisoners’ rights NGO that, together with five other civil society groups, was baselessly declared by the Israeli government a “terrorist organization” in October 2021. UN human rights experts condemned this move as a misuse of counterterrorism measures and a “frontal attack on the Palestinian human rights movement, and on human rights everywhere”. The Israeli authorities have persistently harassed and targeted Salah Hammouri. Since 2000, Israeli authorities have detained Salah Hammouri multiple times, including twice when he was placed under administrative detention – for five months in 2004 and for 13 months in 2017 and 2018.