Why did the Palestinian Authority arrest militants in the West Bank? | News on the conflict between Israel and Palestine

Tarqi al-Khudeiri and his family returned to the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, but the face and presence of the 22-year-old human rights activist was widely known during the demonstrations in the city. Palestinian security forces last week.

Al-Khudeiri told Al Jazeera: “The preventive security forces called my father’s cell phone last Saturday and informed him and me that both of them must have a 10-minute’friendly’ chat at their headquarters.” “They promised me. Father comes home with me.”

The officer then screened a protest video, claiming that Houdieri had chanted insults to the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, but he firmly denied it.

He said: “Everyone knows that I have good relations with members and activists of various political parties.” “These protests are to support the resistance and solidarity of the people of Gaza during the Israeli offensive. It is not possible to use these protests to insult political leaders. meaningful.”

The security forces changed their positions and notified al-Khudeiri that his life was threatened by unknown persons who were insulted for the alleged crimes and were about to take him away.

He said: “The security forces told me to stay at its headquarters for 24 hours to provide protection.”

Al-Khudeiri, who suffers from diabetes and other chronic diseases, told his father to go home and bring his medicine to the security headquarters.

“Suddenly, without telling me anything, I was tied up in the car and taken to the security building. [prison] In Jericho,” he said.

Violent interrogation

That night, the young human rights activist was violently interrogated for several hours, and he was shocked by this “inner anger and depravity” treatment.

He said: “They threatened to hang me with my hands. This is a torture called shabah and beat me physically and verbally.” “They handcuffed my hands behind my back and blindfolded me. , Making me sit in a low chair without a back for a long time.”

During the first 24 hours of detention, Al-Khudeiri’s family knew nothing about his whereabouts. In the end, he was taken to a lonely cell, which was crawling with insects, “not suitable for humans.” As his blood sugar level plummeted to dangerously low levels, he turned a deaf ear to the requirements of the diabetes kit until he had a hypoglycemic episode.

His detention was extended for another 24 hours, and he was barred from seeing a lawyer.

Translation: We call on the Prime Minister @DrShtayyeh to immediately release Tariq al-Khudeiri, who was arbitrarily arrested on May 22 for exercising his right to freedom of speech.

The interrogation began again the next day.

“For me, it’s obvious that this question of insulting political leaders is just an excuse, arresting me and making me grill on other things,” said Hu Dili. He was interrogated for student activism, his previous arrest by Israel in 2019, and other activists and former prisoners.

He said: “They don’t like my outspoken opposition to the Palestinian Authority and accuse me of being a member of Hamas.” “I answer that I am not, but even I shouldn’t be a problem because they represent the occupation of Israel. resistance.”

In the end, the interrogator told him that the prosecutor accused him of “inciting conflict”, “inciting” and “insulting symbolic leaders.”

On Tuesday, al-Khudeiri was prosecuted. Contrary to what the interrogator told him, he said he was innocent and again claimed that he was being held in a safe building to protect himself. They wanted to extend his detention for 15 days, but eventually released him on “his personal responsibility.”

Violation of freedom of speech

The Al-Khudeiri case is one of the recent arrests of dozens of Palestinian activists and college students by Palestinian Authority security forces in the occupied West Bank.

Other detainees include Mahdi Abu Awwad, Mustafa Al-Khawaja, Akram Salamah, Anas Qazzaz and Hussam Amareen, medical students from Al-Quds University.

Translation: Lawyer of Justice: The Jericho court refused to release the political detainee Husseim Amarin, which resulted in him being refused an important exam scheduled for next Saturday at the Al-Quds University School of Medicine.

According to Shaker Tameiza, a lawyer for Adamel Prisoners Rights, the arrests began after the Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip ended and after the West Bank witnessed public protests and support and solidarity with their associates in the Gaza Strip. .

Tameiza told Al Jazeera: “The number of arrests is worrying.” “If it continues, we may see hundreds of political arrests in just a few months.”

The detainee violated the law and was transferred from his hometown or town to a security building in Jericho. The militants colloquially call it “Jericho’s slaughterhouse.”

He said: “According to the testimony we heard, the arrested were tortured in the form of Sabah, verbal abuse and beatings.”

He continued: “The law stipulates that every defendant should be tried in his city.” “Their transfer to Jericho means that the lawyer cannot contact them immediately.”

All arrests are based on violations of freedom of speech, such as social media posts and chants during protests.

Tamisa said: “Most of the accusations against activists are more or less the same, such as’inciting sectarian and ethnic conflict’, which means insulting the Palestinian Authority.”

According to Justice Lawyers Network, the intensified political arrests since last week “obviously contradict the freedom decree recently issued by the President of the Palestinian Authority.”

Members of the Palestinian Authority’s security forces stopped their vehicles at a checkpoint in the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank [File: Jaafar Ashtiyeh/AFP]

Protests are seen as threats by the Palestinian Authority

The suppression of militants is nothing new, and its roots are what political analyst Khalil Shaheen calls the Palestinian Authority’s “survival policy”.

He explained that the Palestinian Authority has continued to maintain its legitimacy in the international community only by adopting the discourse of a two-state solution and the so-called peace process negotiations.

“This means that even if it is rooted in popular protests, it sees any other policy as a threat to it. Any deviation from this Palestinian Authority strategy will result in the government suppressing rights defenders because it sees protests turn into The uprising is not in the interests of the Palestinian Authority.”

In the past, the Palestinian Authority responded to popular protests by co-opting protests or maintaining control over them, in order to force Israel to return to the negotiating table.

However, recent events and developments-from Sheikh Jarrah protests The Israeli raid on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem, the 1948 attack on the Palestinians in the territory, and rockets launched from the Gaza Strip all contributed to the situation.

Shaheen said: “The Palestinian Authority is worried that the armed confrontation with Israel will spread to the occupied West Bank.” “The most important thing is that a new generation of activists has emerged. They are not politicized based on their party membership and therefore cannot be politicized. Selection. These young people have always been at the forefront of the confrontation with the Israeli army in Jerusalem or Haifa. The Palestinian Authority has traditionally not known these young people.”

The arrest was a strategy of fear, which was carried out at the same time as Israel’s “law and order” operation of gathering hundreds of Palestinian citizens in the territory in 1948, which was consistent with the behavior of the authoritarian government, Shaheen said.

He said: “The Palestinian Authority is terrified because it desperately wants to maintain its authority.” “That’s why they postponed the election, because they knew it would be an embarrassment for the dominant party Fatah. failure.”

For the activist Hudir, now is not the time for the various factions to fight for individual political positions.

He said: “The Palestinians need to maintain this unity because we have witnessed Sheikh Jarrah and other areas of Jerusalem, Gaza and the recent events in Palestine in 1948.”

“We need to be united and coordinated to fight Israel’s normalization, occupation and security to cover up the so-called peace process, which is unswerving. In the final analysis, what we do on the street is to allow our people to flourish. Develop and live a glorious and free life.”

On May 18, the Palestinians in solidarity with the Gaza Strip demonstrated in Ramallah City in the occupied West Bank [File: Abbas Momani/AFP]

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