Date of Arrest:
Ofer Detention Center, Prison, and Military Court (&& Beit El Settlement Compound)
Name: Bashar Abdul Aleem Younis Da’na
Date of Birth: 4 May 1987
Marital Status: Single
Education: Social studies student at Al-Quds Open University
Date of Arrest: 20 April 2014
Place of Detention: Ofer Prison
Legal Status: Administrative Detainee
Current Arrest and Detention
Bashar was suddenly surrounded and arrested by a large group of Israeli Occupying Forces (IOF) as he was leaving his home on the morning of 20 April 2014. He was initially taken to a detention and interrogation center in the illegal settlement of Gush Etzion and then transferred to Ofer Prison. According to Bashar’s father, an intelligence officer named Captain Fathi was monitoring Bashar for two days before he was arrested.
Bashar was initially issued a six-month administrative detention order that was then reduced to three months in the confirmation session. Consequently, his administrative detention was set to end in August 2014. On 8 July 2014, the prosecution’s appeal to cancel the order reduction was approved and Bashar’s administrative detention period was extended until 19 October 2014.
Legal Analysis: Social Media as Evidence
The military prosecution requested the judge to confirm a six-month administrative detention order based on a secret file in which they claimed that Bashar had tried engaging others in military activities.
The prosecution’s accusations were based on another detainee’s testimony which stated that, in a conversation with Bashar over social media, Bashar had offered the detainee the idea of initiating a youth association in Hebron that takes care of the issues of young men and women. The prosecution considered this “an attempt from Bashar to renew military work in an illegal organization in Hebron.”
The detainee, whose testimony was presented as evidence for Bashar’s arrest, stated to the police interrogator that his testimony did not suggest that Bashar had offered him to reactivate military work and that the conversation was only about creating a youth association. He added that he is willing to confront the Shabak interrogator and refute these accusations.
The prosecution appealed the order reduction and the appeal session was set on 17 June 2014. On 8 July 2014, the appeal court approved the prosecution’s appeal and cancelled the order reduction. Consequently, Bashar’s administrative detention order will end on 19 October 2014.
The appeal judge justified his decision by stating: “After reviewing the information that Bashar’s administrative detention order was based on, it was clear that Bashar’s detention came as a result of many reasons including the security threat he imposed before the arrest. It is also clear that a list of charges cannot be formed based on the testimony of another detainee. I would like to summarize this by saying that the detention is based on reasons, and I decided to keep the period of the administrative detention as it was previously issued and cancel the reduction.”
The decision of the appeal judge demonstrates the prosecution’s capabilities in holding Palestinians under indefinite administrative detention by renewing their orders without mandating actual evidence to justify such orders. The detainees are denied fair trial in direct violation of internationally agreed upon conventions (Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and Article 78 of the Fourth Geneva Convention).
On 24 April 2014 (four days after Bashar’s arrest), 130 administrative detainees announced going on an open hunger strike in protest of the administrative detention policies demanding the end of administrative detention as well as fair trial.
On 8 May 2014, after Bashar’s administrative detention order was confirmed, Bashar joined the hunger strikers. The Israeli Prison Service (IPS) transferred him from Ofer prison to Ayalon isolation after he announced going on an open hunger strike. They also confiscated his clothes and basic belongings and did not allow him to change his clothes.
In Ayalon, Bashar, along with an estimated 40 other hunger strikers, were subjected to punitive measures, such as isolation in a cell lacking the basic humane conditions with wet floors and worn out mattresses. In addition, the IPS denied the prisoners on hunger strike access to salt during the first 14 days of the hunger strike in an attempt to exhaust them so that they would break the hunger strike. The IPS also subjected them to collective and individual punishments including fines (that amounted to 475 NIS) and denial of family visits.
Bashar was previously arrested in April 2007 and given a 42-month sentence and 30-month suspended sentence for 5 years.
Bashar is a second year student at Al-Quds Open University, majoring in Accounting and was arrested just before his midterms. Bashar also works in a company that sells medical equipment in order to fund his tuition. Bashar’s father, Mr. Abdul Aleem Da’na, was detained a number of times in Israeli prisons, and his mother suffered from the continuous arrests of her family members and from the repeated house raids. Bashar has three sisters that have graduated from their universities and a brother, Shadi, who is an engineer and a lecturer at Birzeit University.
*Write to the Israeli government, military and legal authorities and demand that Bashar Da’na be released immediately.
• Brigadier General Danny Efroni
Military Judge Advocate General
6 David Elazar Street
Harkiya, Tel Aviv
Fax: +972 3 608 0366;
• Maj. Gen. Nitzan Alon
OC Central Command Nehemia Base, Central Command
Neveh Yaacov, Jerusalem
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 Bashar Da’na and to put an end to such an unjust, arbitrary and cruel system of incarceration without trial.