Jerusalem District Court orders release of Professor Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian

Adalah: The police’s arguments clearly show that the arrest of Professor Shalhoub-Kevorkian is unlawful, targeting her research, academic work, and opinions critical of Israel in international forums.

Today, 19 April 2024, the Jerusalem District Court dismissed the police’s appeal against a magistrate's court decision ordering the release of Professor Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian, finding no merit to their claim that she is dangerous and should remain in detention. 


CLICK HERE to read an unofficial English translation of the protocol of the magistrate’s court hearing


During hearings before both courts today, the police claimed that Professor Shalhoub-Kevorkian had engaged in “serious incitement against the State of Israel by making statements against Zionism and even claiming that Israel is committing genocide in the Gaza Strip.” The police accusations were based on statements that she made on a podcast on Makdisi Street, posted on 8 March 2024. In the podcast episode, named "There is so much love in Palestine", Professor  Shalhoub-Kevorkian detailed accounts of her own experiences of working and living under the oppressive Israeli regime, and spoke about the genocide in Gaza, the Israeli authorities’ withholding of bodies, and extreme settler violence.


The police claimed that such statements constituted incitement, asserting that “Professor [Shalhoub-Kevorkian] has a significant influence with her statements. There is extensive exposure both domestically and internationally.” Additionally, the police noted that they had found posters in her home “portraying IDF soldiers as an occupying army”. 


The legal team - Adalah's General Director Dr. Hassan Jabareen and private Attorney Alaa Mahajana - argued that Prof. Shalhoub-Kevorkian was being investigated, among other things, for her academic articles published over years in prestigious English-language journals worldwide. These articles have been studied by students at the Hebrew University for years, and in respected universities around the world. They further argued that all Prof. Shalhoub Kevorkian’s speech is protected under the right to freedom of expression, and that the police had failed to demonstrate how any of her expressions crossed the criminal threshold or constituted incitement.


In his decision, Magistrate Judge Dov Pollock noted that the police searched her house and found “no substantial evidence to support the severity of the accusations or to indicate [her] involvement in further offenses”. The court ordered her released on condition that she attend an interrogation and sign a financial guarantee.


The police appealed the magistrate court’s decision, repeating the same claims it had raised before the lower court. A hearing took place before Jerusalem District Court Judge Abraham Rubin, following which the judge concurred with the magistrate’s court decision and dismissed the police’s appeal. Based on these decisions, Professor Shalhoub-Kevorkian was  released.


Adalah commented:


“The police’s arguments clearly show that the arrest of Professor Shalhoub-Kevorkian is unlawful, targeting her research, academic work, and opinions critical of Israel in international forums. The police failed to demonstrate or explain how Professor Shalhoub-Kevorkian’s statements constituted incitement, with the courts’ finding no merit to their claims that she was dangerous or that her detention was warranted. With the direction and encouragement of openly racist National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir, the police are now persecuting senior, world renowned academics based on their dissenting opinions and academic work.” 


Related Press Releases:

Professor Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian arrested: Jerusalem Magistrates' Court to hear state's request for the extension of her detention tomorrow, Friday, 19 April at 9:30 am


For media inquiries, please contact Miriam Azem, / +972 53-734-0662


Join Adalah's WhatsApp group to receive regular updates.


Join Adalah's mailing list:


Photo by Chaim Goldberg/Flash90