HaMoked has obtained the release of a Palestinian youth who was held in custody for two and a half years pursuant to a warrant for his deportation to Jordan. Israel claims his presence in the Occupied Territories is illegal and intends to deport him to a place to which he has no ties. HaMoked obtained the release of a Palestinian youth who was held in custody for two and a half years pursuant to a warrant for his deportation to Jordan. Israel claims his presence in the Occupied Territories is illegal and intends to deport him to a place to which he has no ties
The petitioner, born in Jordan in 1988, has been living with his family in the West Bank since the age of seven. His parents, siblings and the extended family, all live in the village of Tammun in the Jenin district. One of his brothers lives in Jordan.
At the age of 18 the petitioner was arrested on a security offense and sentenced to serve a year in prison, until December 2007. However, at the end of his term, he was instantly issued a deportation warrant on the grounds that he is not a resident of the Occupied Territories and is illegally present in the West Bank. This although his name appears in the Palestinian population registry and he has a Palestinian identification number – gained through a family unification process initiated on his behalf – and despite having entered the West Bank lawfully at the age of seven.
Remaining in prison after his date of release, Israel demanded he supply his Jordanian passport, notifying him that he bears the onus of proving his Jordanian status and that he will remain in prison until he supplies the required documents.
Since the petitioner has neither a Jordanian passport nor, it seems, any sort of status in Jordan, he remained in prison. Israel did not initiate an inquiry through the Jordanian embassy as to whether he has an official Jordanian status – without doubt a much simpler undertaking for Israel than for the young detainee – Israel thus opted to deprive him of his liberty.
As early as 2008, his family retained the services of a private attorney who petitioned
in a demand to cancel the warrant. The judge, however, accepted the position of the state in full, and in the judgment
, accused the petitioner of refusing to cooperate with those in charge of executing the deportation warrant because he did not supply proof to his official status in Jordan. The judge found it reasonable that the petitioner would remain in prison as penalty for his "lack of cooperation". This despite the fact that deprivation of freedom constitutes the harshest punishment that a proper state can impose, both under Israeli and international law.
In February 2010, HaMoked submitted an additional petition
, demanding to release the petitioner to his home and revoke the deportation warrant he was issued. HaMoked argued, inter alia, that the option of detention is disproportionate and that the he was deprived of the special protection guaranteed to a person who is detained by an administrative authority, i.e. an extensive and substantive judicial review. The petitioner remained in prison for upwards of two years after he finished serving his sentence, and throughout the period no review of the acceptability and proportionality of the detention was held and no alternative to his on-going detention was considered.
In response, the state continued to argue that his presence in the West Bank is illegal, therefore the deportation warrant has cause and validity, and yet agreed to his conditional release. After the hearing, the attorneys representing HaMoked and the state attorney’s office reached an agreement on the conditions for release, which was endorsed by the court. The petitioner was released home "pending settlement of status". The warrant for his deportation still stands.