Israeli Detentions Soar: Families Fear for Missing Loved Ones Amidst Post-War Crackdown

Since the conflict between Israel and Hamas erupted on October 7, there has been a significant rise in the number of Palestinians held in administrative detention, a controversial measure allowing imprisonment without charge or trial.

Among the affected families is the Muna family in Nablus, West Bank, desperately seeking information about their son, journalist Mohammed Anwar Muna, who has been in detention for over six months.

Mohammed’s mother, Najat, expressed the family’s anguish, stating, “We are suffering. We don’t know where he is, how he’s doing.” Administrative detention, an emergency procedure dating back to the British Mandate, permits indefinite imprisonment without due process.

The Muna family’s ordeal began when Israeli soldiers surrounded their house in the early hours, leading to Mohammed’s arrest on June 27, 2023.

Since then, they have struggled to obtain information about his whereabouts and well-being. The Israeli human rights NGO HaMoked has seen a surge in requests for assistance, with the number of calls doubling since October 7.

HaMoked’s Executive Director, Jessica Montell, highlighted the lack of transparency, stating, “The army doesn’t give us any information.

We’ve submitted several petitions to the Supreme Court to get a response. It’s a legal obligation. No one can be detained in secret.”

Mohammed Anwar Muna, a journalist with the Sanad news agency, has a history of being repeatedly placed in administrative detention.

His family believes this is a tactic to impede his work exposing the truth of the occupation. Montell emphasized the challenges faced by those detained, noting that they often receive vague reasons for their arrest based on secret information, making it difficult for them to defend themselves.

Critics argue that Israel is abusing administrative detention, using it as a means of controlling the population.

The Israeli authorities, however, contend that the increase in detentions is a response to heightened security threats in the occupied territories.

Since the October 7 attacks, the number of people in administrative detention has surged, reaching over 3,000, with conditions worsening over the past three months.

Families struggle to communicate with detainees, and the death of several Palestinians in custody has raised concerns about the treatment they endure.

In response to the deteriorating situation, Israel’s national security minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir, has implemented emergency measures, further restricting prison conditions. Human rights organizations argue that these actions are both illegal and immoral.

France 24, reporting on this issue, sheds light on the human impact of the post-war crackdown, emphasizing the families’ anguish and the broader implications for human rights in the region.

Source: France 24

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