FREE PALESTINIAN PARLIAMENTARIAN, HUSSAM KHADER, ILLEGALLY DETAINED IN ISRAEL FOR OVER 2 YEARS sign now

PALESTINIAN PARLIAMENTARIAN, HUSSAM KHADER, ILLEGALLY DETAINED IN ISRAEL FOR OVER 2 YEARS

We, people from all over the world, call on the Government of the State of Israel to immediately release Palestinian Parliamentarian HUSSAM KHADER illegally detained inside Israel since his arrest in March 2003.

Hussam Khader has been subjected to physical and psychological torture, inhumane detention conditions - including one year in solitary confinement - and to legal proceedings that are in violation of international law and international fair trial standards. He has denied the charges against him and claims they are fabricated and obtained from a single witness under torture.

As well as being an elected member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Hussam Khader is a popular Palestinian leader. He has always said that peace will only be achieved through an end to the occupation, and the establishment of an independent and sovereign Palestinian state within the 1967 borders, in the context of a peaceful and just settlement with Israel. He is also well-known for his firm commitment to the right of return for Palestinian refugees, and his stand against corruption and the need for financial accountability, transparency and democracy in Palestinian institutions.

We note that numerous international bodies have expressed serious concern about the violations of international law in Hussam Khader's case, legal procedures which violate international fair trial standards, and the inhumane methods of interrogation and detention to which he has been subjected:

In March 2003, the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) expressed concern about the use of inhumane methods of interrogation against Mr Khader, excessive use of force during his arrest, and his detention in solitary confinment. Mr Khader has been subjected to physical and psychological torture, including sleep deprivation and being tied to a chair while shackled - a method of torture which, according to the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel, is widely used by Israel;
The Inter-Parliamentary Union (an international organisation of Parliaments of sovereign States representing 130 parliaments world-wide, including the Israeli Knesset) have expressed consistent concerns about Mr Khader's case and the violations of international law in his case. The IPU has stated that its conclusion in relation to PLC Marwan Barghouti - that "numerous breaches of international law ... make it impossible to conclude that Mr. Barghouti was given a fair trial" - apply mutis mutandis in the case of Hussam Khader. Thus, Mr Khader's arrest, transfer to, and detention inside, Israel are in violation of international law;
In December 2004, over 100 British Members of Parliament signed an Early Day Motion tabled in the British Parliament expressing concern about the situation of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, in particular, the cases of Hussam Khader and Marwan Barghouti. The motion called on the British Government "to request that the Israel authorities address, as a matter of urgency, the serious legal concerns raised by the Inter-Parliamentary Union in the cases of the imprisoned Palestinian Parliamentarians Marwan Barghouti and Hussam Khader";
The Chairman of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Legislative Council, the Palestinian Minister of Prisoners Affairs, and Fatehs leadership have all issued statements condemning the continued illegal detention of the PLC members Hussam Khader and Marwan Barghouti, and calling for their immediate release.

WE, THE UNDERSIGNED, DEMAND THE IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF HUSSAM KHADER.

We demand that Israel respect international law and adhere to internationally-accepted legal standards to ensure a fair trial, both for Hussam Khader, and for all Palestinian political prisoners.


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