IOF Arrests Patient’s Escort at Erez Crossing

News and Press Release
Originally published
View original
  • Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) arrested 14 Palestinians at Erez crossing since the beginning of 2013.

  • IOF exploits need of Palestinians to travel and use crossings as traps.

  • Al Mezan condemns recent arrest.

According to monitoring and documentation of the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, since the beginning of 2013 IOF has arrested 14 Palestinians at Erez crossing. Of the 14, eight were patients and patient escorts.

The IOF continues to use crossings as traps to arrest Palestinians, exploiting the need to travel. IOF makes use of its tightened closure of the Gaza Strip to humiliate Palestinians, arrest them, or urge them to collaborate.

Recently, at approximately 9:30 am on Tuesday 15 October 2013, the IOF arrested Nu’man Ali Ahmed Rehan, 40, who is a resident of Jabaliya.

According to Al Mezan's field investigations, Rehan was accompanying his mother Deeba Yousif Rehan who was on her way to Al Makassed Hospital for medical treatment.

In her affidavit to Al Mezan, Deeba stated that she went with her son to Erez crossing and found the staff members of the Palestinian Coordination Office were off. When Deeba and her son returned home, they received a phone call from the Coordination Office informing them to go to Erez crossing. Deeba and her son went again to Erez crossing and passed the gate. They were searched and were asked to wait. A man dressed in civilian clothes came to them and asked her son some questions about his job, his father, and his brother. The man asked her son to go to one of the Israeli soldiers who was few meters away from them. The soldier took her son to a room and he did not come back. An hour later, Deeba asked an Israeli soldier to bring her son back to go to the hospital but the soldier asked Deeba to go home. Deeba was crying and refused to leave but the Israeli soldiers asked her to leave.

At approximately 4:00 pm on the same day, Deeba arrived at her house and was informed that her husband received a phone call from the Israeli army informing them that their son was detained.

It’s worth noting that after the continuous closure of Rafah crossing and the Egyptian restrictions imposed on the work of Rafah crossing, Erez crossing becomes the only outlet of Gaza patients whose medicines are not available in Gaza hospitals

The Al Mezan Center for Human Rights expresses its forceful condemnation of the detention of Rehan, a patient’s escort. Al Mezan sees in this incident a continuation of Israel’s policy of extortion of Palestinian patients and exploitation of their medical suffering, in an abuse which makes clear the extent to which Israel exempts itself from its legal commitments under the rules of international humanitarian law (IHL), particularly the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Al Mezan calls on the international community to promptly intervene to stop the Israeli grave and systematic violations of IHL and human rights principles, ensure access to health care of Palestinian patients.

Al Mezan warns of deteriorating in humanitarian situation in Gaza Strip due to the Israeli siege. Al Mezan reiterates its previous calls for lifting the siege and ensuring the Israeli respect of IHL in its dealing with Palestinians.