Investigate the Death of Arafat Jaradat

1 Mar

What follows is a news report prompted by my press release on the shocking treatment of Arafat Jaradat who died while being held in an Israel prison.

27 February 2013 – A United Nations human rights expert today called for an international investigation into the death of Palestinian prisoner Arafat Jaradat, who died in Israeli custody just a few days after his arrest.

“The death of a prisoner during interrogation is always a cause for concern, but in this case, when Israel has shown a pattern and practice of prisoner abuse, the need for outside, credible investigation is more urgent than ever,” stressed the UN Special Rapporteur for human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, Richard Falk.

“The best approach might be the creation of an international forensic team under the auspices of the UN Human Rights Council,” he added in a news release.

Both the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, and the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, have also called for an independent investigation into Mr. Jaradat’s death, which occurred on Saturday.

Mr. Falk pointed to the assessment made by the Palestinian Authority’s chief pathologist, Dr. Saber Aloul, who observed the autopsy carried out inside Israel, and found there were clear signs of torture on the body of the previously healthy, 30-year-old detainee.

Israeli officials initially claimed Mr. Jaradat died of a heart attack, but the preliminary autopsy findings did not include a cause of death, noted the news release.

“In light of Dr. Aloul’s findings that there was no evidence of heart disease or damage, and that there were signs of torture on Jaradat’s body, an independent international investigation should be launched,” stated Mr. Falk.

According to the Israeli human rights organization B’tselem, more than 700 Palestinian detainees have filed complaints against agents of the Israeli security agency Shin Bet for mistreatment during interrogation throughout the last decade. However, noted the news release, not one has led to a criminal investigation.

Mr. Jaradat hailed from the small village of Sa’ir near Hebron and was a gas station attendant. He leaves behind a four-year-old daughter and two-year-old son; his wife Dalal is pregnant with their third child.

“As an occupying power, Israel has special responsibilities under international humanitarian law to deal humanely with Palestinians held in detention, and the international community has similar responsibilities to ensure that these are carried out,” Mr. Falk underscored.

Independent experts, or special rapporteurs, are appointed by the Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a country situation or a specific human rights theme. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

13 Responses to “Investigate the Death of Arafat Jaradat”

  1. Arif Dirlik March 1, 2013 at 8:46 am #

    Thanks, Richard. Arif

  2. Tom Parsons March 1, 2013 at 12:04 pm #

    Myy deepest respect and hearty thanks for hanging in there, Richard. It must be hell, and I know I couldn’t do it even if otherwise qualified, which I’m not. Still, it is so much better to have a voice of conscience telling the world what is happening and pushing for people to stay aware and try to do the right thing – better than the alternative of silent acceptance and averted eyes that I know our corrupt leaders want.

    • Richard Falk March 1, 2013 at 12:31 pm #

      Thanks, Tom, for your encouragement. Best wishes, Richard

  3. Albert Guillaume March 1, 2013 at 7:19 pm #

    Thank you Dr. Falk for lending your voice on behalf of those, who have no other hope or recourse. I lived through world-war 2 and witnessed the cruelties, fears, sufferings and bestial behavior of those, who resemble human beings and feel so bad for those you so unselfishly defend and speak up for.

  4. wingsprd March 1, 2013 at 11:24 pm #

    Once again Richard you promulgate the truth. Yours is a voice for justice and humanity in this wretched one–sided conflict. Please readers don’t say that this is zionism’s right to defend itself. It is brutal and illegal oppression!

  5. DorisV March 2, 2013 at 5:16 pm #

    We must make the Israeli government and military responsible for their actions.

    • Margaret Kelso March 5, 2013 at 6:53 am #

      Hello Professor Falk, I was just reading this story from last Friday about a 40 year old Palestinian Prisoner who died in a Palestinian Authority jail in Jericho. This jail is under PA control.

      His name is Ayman Mohammad Sharif Samara.

      From what i’v read online, it sounds like he might have been tortured by the PA and thats why he died.

      Have you called for an investigation into the death of Ayman Mohammad Sharif Samara?

      Here’s an article about this.
      Prisoner dies in Palestinian Authority custody

      RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — A prisoner being held in a Palestinian Authority jail in Jericho died on Friday, a senior Palestinian official said.

      Ayman Mohammad Sharif Samara, 40, died while being detained on charges of assault, Palestinian Authority attorney general Muhammad Abdul-Ghani al-Uweiwi told Ma’an.

      Initial reports indicate that Samara, who is from Jenin, suffered from diabetes, hypertension and other medical conditions.

      He was arrested on Friday and transferred to a nearby hospital, where he passed away, al-Uweiwi said.

      The PA attorney general denied that the prisoner was tortured or beaten during interrogations and said that an autopsy would be performed and the results made public once completed.

      An investigation into his death has already begun

  6. monalisa March 7, 2013 at 1:52 am #

    Dear Richard,

    thank you for bringing this into the open.

    I admire you for your steadfastness against adverse tidings.

    Some lobbies will have soon to be aware that their repetitive blaming of the suppressed will have been worn out – the first signs of it are already visible as well as the greater community on our globe gets more and more aware of the truth.

    I just wait how long it will take that the US citizen will recognize how much their government has spent and still does spend for Israel while neglecting their own duties for US citizen especially in the light as joblessness is becoming an ever greater economic factor.

    Take care of yourself,


  7. Carey April 11, 2013 at 12:19 am #

    Can I simply say what a relief to find someone who truly understands
    what they’re talking about on the web. You definitely realize how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people should look at this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised you aren’t
    more popular since you most certainly possess the gift.


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