PSCC condemns Israeli arrest of its board member, HRD Sami Abu Ghalia arrest

PNN/ Jerusalem/

Sami Abu Ghalia is a Palestinian activist and leader in the Beduin Community and a bord member of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee (PSCC). He is a well-known popular figure and a human rights defender and activist in promoting non-violent against the Israeli occupation.

Abu Ghalia ‘s family reported that a large force of the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) raided their house in the early hours of the morning of the first of January, 2017 and destroyed the house but they couldn’t find Sami. On the 3rd of January of 2017, Abu Ghalia ‘s family reported that again a large force of the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) raided their house twice in the same day and destroyed the house in an attempt  to arrest Sami terrifying his seven kids and threatening the wife. On the 3rd of January 2017 Sami turned himself in to the Israeli Occupation Forces at the Zaytona Checkpoint in East Jerusalem where they arrested him and took him to El-Galama investigation center near Haifa.

Currently Sami is subjected to long interrogation and in solitary confinement and isolation. He is banned from attorney visits. On the 6 of January he appeared before the Israeli Military court where he was given an 12 day extension without visits or attorney, which means that his right to due process has been violated. On the 16 of January he appeared before the Israeli Military court again and he was given another 11 day extension in the intergation but with an attorney visit after 2 days.

During the last Christmas Holidays, the PSCC has organized a christmas tree in the center of Al Eizariya Town upon Sami’s Initiative. Sami was harassed and threatened by the IOF due to his implementation of the christmas tree initiative. They also, attacked the tree many times and took down all the martyrs pictures that their families hanged on the christmas tree. Sami was arrested previously by the IOF 4 times, due to his activites as a human right defender. Also he has been the target of violent IOF incursions on his home and work. This year the IOF destroyed Sami’s barracks stores 7 times.

The PSCC is concerned at the treatment and the violations brought against human rights defender Sami Abu Gallia, as they solely relate to his legitimate and peaceful human rights activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Furthermore we are concerned of the continues arrest, harassment and prosecution of PSCC Human right defenders and activists.

The international community cannot under any circumstances ignore any longer these violations and must stop Israel´s impunity. The international community has the obligation to protect human rights and its defenders (UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, EU Guidelines on Human Rights Defenders) and act in a fast and efficient way to prevent torture and ill treatment (UN Declaration Against Torture, European Convention on Human Rights).

PSCC urges the international community to take action against these flagrant violations and to guarantee the safety of Sami Abu Ghalia by  Condemning the harassment of Sami Abu Gallia and calling on the authorities to ensure that all charges against him are dropped immediately since they relate to his peaceful exercise of his rights to freedom of expression and assembly, and calling on them to guarantee the right to due process, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly to Sami Abu Gallia and other Palestinian human rights defenders.