Human Rights

Israel and
the Occupied Territories


             Human Rights in Palestine

Human Rights abuses are rampant in Israel. Until recently, torture was legal and the security forces routinely tortured political detainees, most of whom were never charged with any crimes. Methods include violent shaking of detainees, restraining in very painful conditions, sensory deprivation, sounding of loud music for prolonged periods and others. Several prisoners have died as a consequence of torture. It's hoped that a recent Supreme Court decision outlawing this practice, however, will finally put an end to this widely condemned practice.

Israeli forces continue to arbitrarily detained hundreds of Palestinians on "security" grounds. Hundreds are put under administrative detention, without being charged or sentenced, in violation of internationally protected due process rights. Some are kept in prison for years without ever being charged. Hundreds more are sent to prison for political reasons following trials that do not comply with international due process standards. Often the main evidence against prisoners are confessions extracted through torture. Detainees are regularly denied visits from their lawyers or family members.

Dozens of Lebanese are also being held in administrative detention in Israeli-controlled Southern Lebanon. This includes men, women and children. Some have been in prison for over ten years without charges. The Israeli Supreme Court has found it lawful to hold otherwise unlawfully-detained prisoners as "bargaining chips" for exchange for Israeli prisoners abroad.

Israeli security forces have also engaged in extra-judicial executions of Palestinians. Those responsible are very rarely punished for their crimes.

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