No Mercy in Bethlehem

Date posted: September 10, 2007
By Amira Hass

The five daily prayers helped Nader E’bayat calculate how many days had passed during his first weeks of detention at the interrogation division of the Palestinian Preventive Security Service in Bethlehem. Toward the end, when he was transferred to the interrogation cells at the Bituniya headquarters, he started to lose count. Altogether, E’bayat spent 47 days in detention, from June 30 to August 15. He was released on the order of the Bethlehem magistrate’s court after no evidence was presented to prove accusations that he had participated in Hamas’ operative force in the West Bank.

E’bayat is one of some 650 Hamas members who have been arrested by the Palestinian Authority’s security forces in the West Bank since the middle of June, Hamas says. Palestinian human rights organizations estimate that 80 to 120 Hamas activists are currently detained in various interrogation facilities throughout the West Bank. Many of those who were released are afraid to give written testimony about their ordeal, while the rumor mill has it that Hamas activists have been instructed to spread orchestrated lies about torture in detention.

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By the Same Author:
* No Mercy in Bethlehem
* Candy at the Checkpoint
* Three Governments and One Closed Crossing
* A Pattern Of Closure
* Gaza Residents Tell of Demeaning Interrogation by Shin Bet


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