Ramallah, 28 November 2012 - The military prosecution in Ofer court issued a list of charges against human rights defender Ayman Nasser on Monday 26 November 2012. The charges include support and solidarity with Palestinian prisoners, participating in the annual Prisoner’s Day on 17 April (the charges specified participation in 2011 and 2012), as well as participating in solidarity activities during hunger strikes (both collective hunger strikes and individual hunger strikes), in addition to attending a festival anniversary of Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa on 27 August 2012. The court postponed the next hearing to 3 December 2012 to consider the charges issued against Ayman.
Mahmoud Hassan, director of the Legal Unit at Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, denounces these accusations and sees them as “a desperate attempt to convict popular and official solidarity with the prisoners’ issue, especially since events like Prisoner’s Day and the anniversary of Martyr Abu Ali Mustafa are public occasions that are approved officially and nationally and enjoy participation from all sectors of society. These events take place in streets and public squares, and therefore allow participation for the entire community.” Hassan adds: “these attempts fall under the vigorous pursuit of the General Security Service (Shabak) to retaliate against the Palestinian people for their continued solidarity and support for prisoners rights, as well as exact retribution from Palestinian human rights organizations and limit their work that exposes the occupation’s policies and its repressive inhumane procedures against prisoners and detainees.”
Ayman Nasser (42 years old) was arrested at dawn on 25 October 2012 by a convoy of Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) soldiers. The IOF brought intelligence officers and police dogs to raid his house in Saffa village, and searched his home violently without taking into account the presence of Ayman’s wife, Mrs. Haleema Nasser and their four children (Ameen 13 years, Naji 11 years, Nadeem 8 years, Mohammad 3 years) who were sleeping. They confiscated Ayman’s personal computer, mobile phone and parts of his children’s computer. After being subjected to interrogation inside his home for over an hour, the IOF transferred Ayman to Al Moskobiyeh interrogation center in Jerusalem. Ayman spent 39 days in interrogation at Al Moskobiyeh, during which he was subjected to lengthy sessions of intensive and harsh interrogation while being shackled to a chair with his hands behind his back, and with some of the sessions lasting for more than 20 hours a day continuously. Between interrogation sessions Ayman remained in solitary confinement in a small cell with rough grey walls, a dim yellow light and a single blanket. He was not aware at the time, but all of these measures were practiced against him in order to break him psychologically and physically. It should be noted that Ayman has several pre-existing health conditions; he suffers from severe back pain as a result of an inflammation in his spine, he also suffers from ulceration in his colon, and regularly takes five kinds of medications and pain killers.
On 22 November 2012, as part of its repression tactics, the IOF transferred Ayman from Al Moskobiyeh interrogation center to Megiddo prison and placed him in solitary confinement under inhumane life conditions, he is detained in an isolated cell, and is transported to and from court in a private vehicle. Please note that Megiddo isolation section is intended for prisoners with disciplinary sanctions imposed by the Israeli Prison Service.
This is not Ayman’s first experience in Israeli prisons, he spent 6 years in Israeli prisons from 1991 to 1997.
Ayman Nasser, or “Abu Ameen,” as he is fondly called by his colleagues and friends, never allowed his failing health to prevent him from fulfilling his cultural, social and educational roles. Not only is he a full-time researcher at Addameer, an organization that he has represented on many occasions, but he is also a part-time lecturer at Al Quds Open University, and was the director of the Saffa Sports Club for two consecutive terms since 2003, as well as a representative in the High National Council on Prisoners. While he was detained in Al Moskobiyeh, he was elected as a member of the Saffa Local Council, where he ran as candidate in the “United Saffa” bloc. Ayman holds a master’s degree in educational psychology.
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association holds the occupation responsible for the safety of Ayman, and demands his immediate, unconditioned release. Addameer believes that the continuation of Ayman’s detention by the occupation forces is a severe violation of his rights as a human rights defender and also violates the Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights Defenders of 1998. Addameer also demands the United Nations to immediately intervene this infringement of his rights, as well as demand the occupying power to respect the rules and provisions of International Humanitarian Law and the International Bill of Human Rights. Until then, Addameer will continue to defend Palestinian political prisoners until they all see freedom.
Write to the Israeli government, military and legal authorities and demand that Ayman Nasser be released immediately.
- Brigadier General Danny Efroni
Military Judge Advocate General
6 David Elazar Street
Harkiya, Tel Aviv
Fax: +972 3 608 0366; +972 3 569 4526
Email: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
- Maj. Gen. Nitzan Alon
OC Central Command Nehemia Base, Central Command
Neveh Yaacov, Jerusalam
Fax: +972 2 530 5741
- Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Ehud Barak
Ministry of Defense
37 Kaplan Street, Hakirya
Tel Aviv 61909, Israel
Fax: +972 3 691 6940 / 696 2757
- Col. Eli Bar On
Legal Advisor of Judea and Samaria PO Box 5
Beth El 90631
Fax: +972 2 9977326
*Write to your own elected representatives urging them to pressure Israel to release Ayman Nasser.