6 residents of East Jerusalem placed under warrant curfew

Six residents of the Isawiya district in East Jerusalem were placed under nighttime curfew for several months in a rare move Thursday citing British Mandate-era regulations, according to the Palestinian WAFA news agency.

Previously, the home front command had issued six administrative injunctions concerning “sensitive information” concerning alleged activities, according to Haaretz. Injunctions that grant broad authority to military commanders are typically used for demolitions and detention without trial in the West Bank. The decision to issue the injunction against permanent Israeli residents in Jerusalem is more unusual.

According to Haaretz, Palestinian and Israeli lawyers working in Jerusalem do not recall any personal administrative detention orders ever being issued in the capital.

The IDF said these decisions are “made when defense officials have information indicating a risk to public safety.” This information… is based on classified information, which cannot be disclosed ”.

The nighttime curfew was first enacted into defense regulations by the British Mandate in 1945 to combat Arab and Jewish riots and rebellions in the region. The regulations provided for curfews, censorship measures, movement restriction measures, administrative detention and deportation measures.

The regulation was passed into the law of the new state of Israel in May 1948 with Article 11 of the Law and Administration Ordinance stating that “the law which existed in Palestine on May 14, 1948 shall remain in force” . The Ordinance added that this excluded any law contrary to the laws of the Provisional Council of State and that all laws were subject to modification by the State and its authorities.

The State of Israel still uses the regulations to this day, especially those regarding censorship and administrative detention.

During the British Mandate, the Settlement largely targeted Jews. Mandate Jewish residents and visitors were appalled at the settlement. Richard Crossman, a guest member of the Anglo-American Commission of Inquiry in early 1946, said that “there is no doubt that Palestine is today a police state”, according to Professor Alan Dowty, former chairman of the Association for Israel Studies.

The Knesset discussed the removal of the Standing Orders in 1951, but failed to do so. During the discussions, then opposition leader Menachem Begin rallied to the rules, saying: “The law you used is Nazi, it is tyrannical, it is immoral; and an immoral law is also an illegal law.

“If these laws, the terrorist laws of a repressive regime, remain in the State of Israel, the day will come when no group will be unharmed,” Begin stressed.

The six men under the curfew are Anwar Sami Obeid, Muhammad Elayyan Elayyan, Fayez Muhammad Mheisen, Muhammad Musa Mustafa, Adam Kayed Mahmoud and Mahmoud Ramadan Obeid, according to WAFA. The period during which curfews will be imposed on the six ranges from two to four months.

The young people were released last week after being arrested for disturbing public order. They will be subject to injunctions and will be confined to their homes overnight. Security officials said the reason for the injunctions was information that pointed to the risks posed by the Isawiya inhabitants, according to HaaretzAnwar Obeid has been imprisoned for four years in the past and has been arrested 13 times in the past year. He was not charged in any of these cases and was released shortly thereafter with restrictions.

One resident was told: “You are a terrorist activist in your neighborhood. As such, you are known to be involved in disturbing public order and throwing Molotov cocktails.

Some people arrested in recent arrest campaigns in the neighborhood said police told them if they did not stop the stone throwing their Israeli residency status would be revoked. Only a small number of East Jerusalem residents have ever had their residences revoked.

Isawiya, located next to the Mount Scopus campus of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Hadassah University Medical Center, is home to approximately 22,000 Palestinians. According to residents and activists, police have entered the neighborhood almost every night since June 12. According to WAFA, there has been a “dramatic increase in police raids which have completely disrupted their lives and plunged the neighborhood into chaos.”

Authorities initially increased their presence in Isawiya due to stone-throwing by residents, according to an Oct. 6 report by Israeli human rights group B’Tselem. According to the B’Tselem report, “the harassment includes daily raids in the neighborhood, the detention of residents returning from work, the issuing of tickets for false offenses, the execution of house demolition orders, acts of violence and detention – especially of minors. “

Residents and activists allege authorities regularly use tear gas and stun grenades, raids homes at night, establish checkpoints and conduct random searches. They also claim that police have arrested between 500 and 600 residents in the past five and a half months, including 300 children. Omar Atiya, a 53-year-old member of the community’s parents’ council, said only seven or eight of those arrested have been charged.

Abby Seitz contributed to this report.


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Albert C. Prince

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