The Law Society of England and Wales, one of the oldest and largest professional associations of lawyers, representing more than 145,000 solicitors, issued a letter to the President of the Israeli state, copied to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s ambassadors to the UK and the UN, and Juan Mendez, the UN Special Rapporteur on torture, on the case of imprisoned Palestinian human rights attorney Shireen Issawi.
Issawi, who is detained as well as her brothers, Samer and Medhat, was arrested in March 2014. She had earlier been the international spokesperson for the solidarity campaign for her brother Samer, who won his release via a lengthy 270-day hunger strike. (He was later rearrested.)
The Law Society issued the letter below, as well as the following statement:
The Law Society is concerned by reports of the arrest, imprisonment and ill-treatment of the Palestinian human rights lawyer, Ms Shireen Issawi. It is reported that the Israeli Army entered Shireen Issawi’s house on 6 March 2014 and arrested her without warrant, and one of her brothers as well as another individual believed to be a lawyer who was present in her house. The Israeli forces confiscated some of her personal items. According to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, she has been held for two months in solitary confinement in Al Maskubieh Complex of Jerusalem, with no family visits and severe questioning for more than a month. She has been subsequently transferred to the Hasharon prison.