TAKE ACTION: Urgent call to free Nael Barghouthi, longest-held Palestinian prisoner

Palestinian prisoner Nael Barghouthi, 59 has been imprisoned for 36 years in Israeli jails, and he is the longest-held Palestinian political prisoner. Today, on the basis of so-called “secret evidence,” he is threatened with the re-imposition of life imprisonment with no charges and no legitimate trial.

Along with over 1,000 fellow prisoners, he was released in 2011 as part of the Wafa al-Ahrar prisoner exchange. While he married after his release and returned to his life, in 2014, he was swept up with other former prisoners in a series of arrests. Under Israeli military order 1651 – violating the release agreement –  re-arrested prisoners can have their former sentences reimposed upon them by a military committee on the basis of secret evidence. This secret evidence is denied to both the prisoner and their lawyer.

Sign and share the petition: https://www.change.org/p/international-officials-pressure-israel-to-free-nael-barghouthi

Even with this secret evidence, Nael Barghouthi was ordered to 30 months in prison, a sentence that ended in mid-December. He has remained in prison due to an appeal by the military prosecution, seeking the re-imposition of a life sentence on the basis of so-called secret evidence. Barghouthi continues to be denied visits from his wife, Iman Nafie, as she is also a former political prisoner in Israeli jails.

The next hearing in his case will take place on 3 January and his case will continue to the highest levels. Iman Nafie has pledged to pursue this case in all legal venues to demand freedom for her husband.

UPDATE (January 3): The hearing in the case of Palestinian prisoner Nael Barghouthi, 59, the longest-held Palestinian prisoner, was postponed until tomorrow, Wednesday 4 January, at the Ofer military court. This is a critical moment to keep up the pressure!

Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association and Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network are joining in this urgent call for action to pressure Israel to release Nael Barghouthi, being held as a political hostage by the Israeli government.


  1. Sign and share the Change.org petition to urge international officials to take action for Nael Barghouthi’s release: https://www.change.org/p/international-officials-pressure-israel-to-free-nael-barghouthi
  1. Organize a protest, demonstration, speaking event or banner drop in your city, community or campus calling for freedom for Nael Barghouthi and his fellow Palestinian prisoners.
  1. Write to Israeli officials to demand Nael Barghouthi’s release. Write a message and email or fax it to the officials below. Contact information and sample letter follow:

Contact information:

Minister of Defence
Avigdor Liberman
Ministry of Defence
37 Kaplan Street
Tel Aviv 61909, Israel
Fax: +972 73 323 3300
Email: minister@mod.gov.il
Salutation: Dear Minister

Minister of Justice
Ayelet Shaked
Ministry of Justice
29 Salah al-Din Street
Jerusalem, 91010, Israel
Fax: +972 2 640 8402
Email: sar@justice.gov.il
Salutation: Dear Ministe

Attorney General
Avichai Mendelbilt
Ministry of Justice
29 Salah al-Din Street
Jerusalem 91010, Israel
Fax: +972 2 530 3367
Email: ishkat-yoetz@justice.gov.il

Military Judge Advocate General
Brigadier General Sharon Afek
Hakirya, Tel Aviv, Israel
Fax: +972 3 569 4526
Email: Mag@idf.gov.il
Salutation: Dear Judge Advocate General

Commander of the IOF – West Bank
Major-General Roni Numa
GOC Central Command
Military Post 01149, Battalion 877
Israel Defense Forces, Israel
Fax: +972 2 530 5741+972 2 530 5724
Salutation: Dear Major-General Roni Numa

Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan
Kiryat Hamemshala
PO Box 18182
Jerusalem 91181, Israel
Fax: +972 2 584 7872
Email: gerdan@knesset.gov.il
Salutation: Dear Minister

Sample Letter:

Dear Ministers,

I write today to demand  immediate release of the longest-held Palestinian prisoner Nael Barghouthi, held for a total of 36 years in Israeli prisons. Nael Barghouthi is being threatened with the re-imposition of his life sentence on the basis of so-called “secret evidence”  by an arbitrary Israeli military committee.

Nael Barghouthi was released with over 1,000 prisoners in the 2011 Wafa al-Ahrar prisoner exchange. In 2014, along with dozens of fellow released prisoners, Barghouthi was re-arrested. Under Israeli military order 1651 – that contravenes the term of the prisoner release – re-arrested prisoners can have their former sentences reimposed upon them by a military committee on the basis of secret evidence.

Barghouthi was originally sentenced to 30 months on the basis of secret evidence, yet the Israeli military continues to pursue him and seek the re-imposition of his life sentence. He has also been denied family visits with his wife on the pretext of “security” as she is a former prisoner.

I demand the immediate release of Nael Barghouthi and an end to the re-imposition of former prisoners’ sentences on the basis of so-called secret information. This is an attempt to use Palestinian former prisoners as political hostages in future prisoner exchanges and to violate the exchange agreement itself. His continued detention is arbitrary and unjust, and I demand his immediate freedom.