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15 March 2007
HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL
Agenda item 2
IMPLEMENTATION OF GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION 60/251
OF 15 MARCH 2006 ENTITLED "HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL"
Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of
human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism
Communications with Governments*
*The present report is being circulated as received, in the languages of submission only, as it greatly exceeds the word limitation currently used by the relevant General Assembly resolution.
Communications sent to the Government by the Special Rapporteur
29. On 21 August 2006 the Special Rapporteur, jointly with the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of freedom of opinion and expression, sent a letter to the Government of Israel with regard to information received concerning
Mr. Aziz Dweik
, Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Mr. Dweik, an academic aged 57 and member of Hamas, was elected Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council after the most recent elections. On 5 August 2006, Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) surrounded Mr. Dweik's house in Ramallah and took him into custody. From there he was taken to Ofer prison. On or around 10 August 2006, a court in Ofer decided to extend Mr. Dweik's detention, for further eight days. In these proceedings he had the assistance of a lawyer. He was then transferred to the Kfar Youna detention centre. The IDF has confirmed the detention of Mr. Dweik, stating that it was justified by Hamas being listed as a terrorist organization. Mr. Dweik remains in IDF detention. Israeli forces had already, on 29 June 2006, arrested eight members of the Palestinian Authority's government and 20 or more members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Reminding the Government of article 25 of the ICCPR and its pivotal role in a democratic society, the Special Rapporteurs urged the Government to take all necessary measures to guarantee that the rights and freedoms of the aforementioned person are respected. Furthermore, the Government was requested to indicate the legal basis for qualifying an individual or an entity as “terrorist” under Israeli law.
Communication from the Government
30. As at 31 January 2007, there had been no reply to the Special Rapporteurs’ correspondence.