Adalah Meets with Local Lawyers to Respond to the Crisis


Palestinian Lawyers Declare That They Will Defend all Palestinian Citizens of Israel Detained During the Conflict on a Voluntary Basis 

On 17 October 2000, Adalah hosted a meeting of 120 Palestinian lawyers at our office in Shfaram to organize and coordinate legal actions on behalf of Palestinian citizens of Israel detained during the conflict, which began on 29 September 2000. Discussion focused on how to best defend the detainees in a coordinated and effective manner, representation of those injured during the conflict, and the one-sided racist press coverage- locally and internationally. 

The meeting closed with the following decisions:

1) We confirm that we are part of the Palestinian community in Israeli, we share our communities’ struggles, and we are determined to defend all the Palestinians citizens of Israel detained during this crisis on a voluntary basis. 

2) We reaffirm the right of Palestinian citizens of Israel to express our political views, and stand in solidarity with our Palestinian brethren against the oppressive policy of the Israeli occupation and the massacre of innocent Palestinians. We emphasize that the violent response of the State of Israel towards Palestinian citizens’ demonstrations violates both local and international law on civil and political rights of citizens and minorities. 

3) We confirm that the policy of detaining Palestinians is political and demands action by the Palestinian using all the legal means available in order to release the detained and prevent future arbitrary detentions. 

4) We are shocked by the Israeli Bar Association’s minimal reaction and silence regarding the gross violation of domestic and international law committed by Israel. We demand that the Israeli Bar Association take a clear and serious position against these dangerous legal violations. 

5) We express our deep concern about the discriminatory and oppressive decisions of legal institutions that are clearly subjective and based on national belonging. The rule of law was violated and the independence of the judiciary was compromised during this conflict. 

6) Stemming from our obligations to assist our people, we have decided to divide ourselves into regional groups, with one coordinator for each group. Coordinators will be responsible for maintaining contacts with the detainees and their parents, the media press, and other coordinators.  

We appeal to all Palestinian lawyers in Israel to co-operate with the Coordinator in their respective regions, and to provide coordinators and Adalah with any new information regarding those detained.