Al-Zaytouna Centre has published a new Arabic book entitled “The Individual Criminal Responsibility for Serious Violations Against Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees Under Public International Law,” by Shireen Essawi, and offers Chapter Two “Prosecuting Israeli Individuals Who Have Committed International Crimes Against Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees” for free download.
The 156-page book is a Public Law master’s thesis conducted at the Faculty of Law and Public Administration at Birzeit University in Palestine. The study uses analytical approach to determine the individual criminal responsibility of the Israelis, who committed serious international crimes against Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons. It has researched ways to provide international protection to Palestinian detainees under international humanitarian and criminal law.
|>> Click here to download, Chapter Two (in Arabic):
Prosecuting Israeli Individuals Who Have Committed International Crimes Against Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees (45 pages, 1.8 MB) (Arabic)
Essawi discusses the legal status of Palestinian detainees under international humanitarian law and the necessary conditions for the prisoners to be considered prisoners of war or detainees, and then she discusses the rights granted to them by international humanitarian law. She reviews the conditions to be met for the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to try Israeli perpetrators of international crimes against the Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons.
The researcher reached a number of results, the most prominent of which are that the international humanitarian law is applicable to the occupied Palestinian territories in 1967, which results in granting the “prisoner of war” status in some cases of Palestinian prisoners and detainees, and the “detainee” status in other cases, according to the availability of the conditions stipulated in international humanitarian law.
Essawi concludes that the elements of war crimes and crimes against humanity stipulated in the Rome Statute are available in this case, and that the ICC has jurisdiction to exercise its jurisdiction to some cases of war crimes and crimes against humanity against Palestinian prisoners and detainees. The author recommends that the “State of Palestine” should go to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to obtain an advisory opinion on the necessity of granting these prisoners and detainees the status of a prisoner of war or detainee. This step may pose some problems including keeping the prisoners and detainees in captivity until the end of the international conflict with the Israel, however, she sees the necessity of deciding this issue from the pure legal point of view. For when the status of a prisoner of war applies to many Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons, this would grant them rights other than those granted to other detainees.
This book addresses international humanitarian law and international criminal law from an applied legal perspective, in order to bridge the gaps in the texts of international law and protect the Palestinian people under occupation, who are witnessing various developments.