Palestinian journalist ordered to administrative detention, campaign launched for syndicate leader’s release

adib-alatrashThe Israeli Ofer military court issued a thee-month administrative detention order against Palestinian journalist Adib al-Atrash on Sunday, 17 July, as the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate launched an international effort to free syndicate leader Omar Nazzal, also held under administrative detention without charge or trial.

omar-nazzal-abdallahAl-Atrash, who recently graduated from Eastern Mediterranean University in Cyprus, was arrested by Israeli occupation forces on Monday, 20 June from his family’s home in Al-Khalil. Al-Atrash and Nazzal are two of over twenty Palestinian journalists detained and imprisoned by the Israeli occupation.

Nazzal was arrested by Israeli occupation forces on 23 April 2016, as he attempted to cross at the Karameh crossing from Palestine’s West Bank to Jordan, to travel to the European Federation of Journalists’ annual general meeting in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Nazzal, a member of the PJS’ general secretariat, was representing the syndicate at the conference; he was also ordered to four months’ administrative detention without charge or trial.

The Palestinian Journalists Syndicate is working with the International Federation of Journalists and international syndicates of journalists to campaign for freedom for Nazzal and his imprisoned colleagues. The IFJ has called for the release of Nazzal and other imprisoned Palestinian journalists, including former hunger striker and administrative detainee Mohammed al-Qeeq.

Al-Atrash and Nazzal are among nearly 750 Palestinians held under administrative detention without charge or trial, out of a total of 7,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. Administrative detention orders, issued for periods of one to six months on the basis of secret evidence, are indefinitely renewable.