Archive for the 'United Nations Office of the High Commissioner forHuman Rights' Category

Israel’s use of administrative detention against Palestinians draws concern of UN rights office

UN News Centre

OHCHR spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani. Photo: UN Multimedia

OHCHR spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani. Photo: UN Multimedia

10 April 2015 – The United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR) today expressed concern by the continued and increasing use of administrative detention by Israeli authorities against Palestinians, who are being held without charge or trial, often on the basis of secret evidence, for periods of up to six months.

Briefing reporters in Geneva, OHCHR spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani said that detainees were also often transferred to prisons inside Israel in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Most recently, Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) member Khalida Jarrar was arrested on 2 April 2015 and subsequently detained pursuant to an administrative detention order issued by an Israeli military commander in the West Bank on Sunday 5 April.

Ms. Jarrar remains in administrative detention in a prison in Israel. The order is currently under review by the Ofer Military Court in the West Bank and if confirmed, Ms. Jarrar will be subjected to six months detention, without charge or trial, renewable indefinitely.

This is not the first time Ms. Jarrar had been subject to administrative orders by the Israeli military commander in the West Bank, said Ms. Shamdasani. On 20 August 2014, Ms. Jarrar received a military order giving her 24 hours to move from Ramallah, where she lived, to the district of Jericho where her movements would be restricted for six months. On appeal, an Israeli court reduced the restriction to one month.

According to the press release, the Israeli practice of administrative detention has been condemned on numerous occasions by the UN Human Rights Office and the Human Rights Committee that oversees implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Israel has ratified.

However, as of February this year, there are reportedly 424 Palestinians held under administrative detention orders – more than double the 181 held at the same time last year, said Ms. Shamdasani.

OHCHR reiterates it call on Israel to end its practice of administrative detention and to either release without delay or to promptly charge all administrative detainees and prosecute them with all the judicial guarantees required by international human rights law, she said.

Liberty and security: Human Rights Committee clarifies limits on detention

PRESS RELEASE
UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

DSC05112 (300 x 400)

GENEVA (30 October 2014) – The UN Human Rights Committee has issued an authoritative new commentary on one of the most important issues in international human rights law – when and how is it justified to deprive a person of their liberty, and what obligations do States have to avoid people being unlawfully or arbitrarily detained.

“Arbitrary detention is a profound threat to liberty and to the enjoyment of all other rights,” said Gerald Neuman, Committee member and rapporteur of the commentary which has now been adopted by the Committee. Read more »

“Lasting peace entails the exercise of self-determination by all peoples without discrimination” – UN rights expert

PRESS RELEASE
United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

determination (400 x 243)

NEW YORK / GENEVA (28 October 2014) – The realization of the right of self-determination is essential to maintain local, regional and international peace and must be seen as an important conflict-prevention strategy, the United Nations Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred de Zayas, said on Monday. Read more »

UN expert: A drone is not a cop

PRESS RELEASE
United Nations Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights

Drone flying above Gaza City residential area

Drone flying above Gaza City residential area

A drone is not a cop – UN rights expert concerned about technologies that depersonalise the use of force

NEW YORK / GENEVA (23 October 2014) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns, raised concern about the increasing use of technologies that depersonalise the use of force –including armed drones– not only on the battlefield, but also in the domestic law enforcement.

During the presentation of his report* to the UN General Assembly on the use of armed drones for law enforcement, Mr. Heyns provided examples of such technology that is for sale worldwide, to be used by the police and private security firms to control demonstrations, guard strategic buildings, and to hunt down escapees. Read more »

Gaza: Statement by Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Geneva, 23 July 2014

Human Rights Council 21st Special Session:
Human Rights Situation in the
Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem

Boy trapped in rubble, Gaza

Boy trapped in rubble, Gaza

Mr. President,

Distinguished Members of the Human Rights Council,

Excellencies,

The situation in the occupied Gaza Strip is critical for the civilians living there and requires your urgent attention. Since Israel announced its military operation “Protective Edge” on 7 July, Gaza has been subjected to daily intensive bombardment from the air, land and sea, employing well over 2,100 air strikes alone. The hostilities have resulted in the deaths of more than 600 Palestinians, including at least 147 children and 74 women.

This is the third serious escalation of hostilities in my six years as High Commissioner. As we saw during the two previous crises in 2009 and 2012, it is innocent civilians in the Gaza Strip, including children, women, the elderly and persons with disabilities, who are suffering the most. Read more »

Pillay alarmed at mounting civilian toll in Gaza, appeals to all sides to abide by international law

PRESS RELEASE

UNOHCHR

GENEVA (11 July 2014) – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay on Friday expressed alarm at the Israeli military operations resulting in the killing of Palestinian civilians in Gaza, as well as the indiscriminate firing of rockets from Gaza into Israel. She appealed to all sides to abide by their obligations under international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

As of Thursday early afternoon, 88 Palestinians, including at least 21 children and 11 women, had been killed in Gaza as a result of Israeli strikes since the beginning of Israel’s latest military operation “Protective Edge” on Tuesday night. Reports suggest that hundreds more have been injured. Israeli media reports over 800 strikes since the operation began, with 60 on the morning of 10 July alone. Read more »

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