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Commission condemns execution of three men in Gaza

Graphic: ICHR office in Ramallah

The ICHR reiterated its strong opposition to the death penalty and called for upcoming executions set to be carried out in Gaza to be revoked.

The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) has condemned the execution of three citizens by the Gaza-based Ministry of Interior.

The ICHR said in a statement that the three citizens were executed at the Gaza Correction and Rehabilitation Centre (Al Katibah) at dawn on 31 May 2016.

"The ICHR reiterates its opposition to the death penalty. In the absence of the President's endorsement of the death sentences, the execution of these citizens amounts to extrajudicial killing," the ICHR's statement said.

According to information provided to the ICHR, the Gaza-based Ministry of Interior executed:

  • Mohammed Fat'hi Mohammed Othman, a 29-year-old resident of Rafah city, sentenced to death by hanging by the Khan Yunis Court of First Instance.
  • Yousef Mohammed Abu Shamlah, a 38-year-old resident of the Central Gaza governorate, sentenced to death by hanging by the Deir al Balah Court of Instance.
  • Ahmed Hilmi Abdul Qader Sharab, a 43-year-old resident of the Khan Yunis city, Southern Gaza, sentenced to death by firing squad by the Standing Military Court in Gaza.

In its statement, the ICHR noted that the responsible authorities in the Gaza Strip executed the men despite the calls of civil society calls to not carry out the death sentences.

"In light of absent fair trial guarantees, the executions directly violate the principle of legitimacy and constitute a serious setback to public rights and freedoms in the Gaza Strip," the ICHR said.

"Against this background, the ICHR confirms its opposition to the death penalty and demands that death sentences set to be carried out over the upcoming period in Gaza be revoked. In addition to safeguarding all fair trial guarantees, taking civilians before military courts must come to an end."

The ICHR further called for responsible authorities to comply with the international human rights conventions to which the State of Palestine has acceded.

Date: 2 June 2016

Source: Independent Commission for Human Rights

Image credits

  1. ICHR office in Ramallah - APF/Ben Lee