I am not leaving… I am staying in Jerusalem

The price of Freedom is less than the price of Oppression”. William D. Boyce: the legacy of John Brown

by Samer Abu Aisha

The  Israeli Occupation Forces practice many oppressive policies against Palestinians including deportation, assassination and other arbitrary practices claiming that the persons “pose a threat to the security of Israel and its projects” in an attempt to weaken the unity of the Palestinian society and to deny Palestinian of their freedom. The occupation forces practice the policy of deportation against Palestinians based on Article 112 of the emergency law which was enacted by the British Mandate in 1945. The occupation authorities developed this law and implement its policies and procedures in the West Bank and Gaza in a number of ways such as: administrative detention, travel ban orders, deportation in all of its types and other policies that aim to keep the colonial project ongoing.
The deportation policy, especially in Jerusalem, aim to empty the city of its Palestinian residents that work to protect the city and keep its Palestinian identity. Deporting Palestinians out of Jerusalem helps the occupation take control of the city, its lands and holy sites. This is part of the collective punishment and ethnic cleansing that continue to be practiced against Palestinian that reside in Jerusalem. The deportation policy is followed by a number of laws and discriminatory procedures such as house demolitions and the resumption of the use of administrative detention against Jerusalemites. All of the before mentioned practices of the occupation forces come only to suppress any attempts of fighting the occupation and to guarantee complete control over the Palestinian society in Jerusalem preventing any kind of popular movement.

International definition
According to the international definition, arbitrary deportation means moving an individual against their will inside or outside the national borders. Deportation of protected persons is an illegal arbitrary procedure and is a grave violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, especially Article (147) which considers it a war crime. The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court also considers deportation a war crime. In addition, Article (9) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights clearly states (no one shall be arrested or detained or exiled arbitrarily); this means that according to international law deportation is an illegal procedure and should not be resorted to or practiced. Practicing the deportation policy under any circumstances or motives is a crime against humanity and a war crime that should be facing accountability.

The deportation of Hijazi Abu Sbeih
The head of Central Command “Yoel Strick” issued a six-month deportation order against Hijazi Abu Sbeih which bans him from entering the city of Jerusalem claiming the he “poses a threat to the security of the state”. Abu Sbeih was arrested by the intelligence forces special unit from Salah AlDeen street in Jerusalem, then was taken to Moskobiyeh police station before receiving the deportation order.

The deportation of journalist Samer Abu Aisha
The IOF arrest journalist Samer Abu Aisha on 19/8/2015 and subjected him to a very tough interrogation that lasted for 43 days and accused him of travelling to a hostile state. Samer was  released on 1/10/2015 and was put under house arrest until the end of legal proceedings. On 23/12/2015, The IOF issued a five-month deportation order that bans Samer from entering Jerusalem based on  a secret file that neither Samer nor his lawyer can review. The head of Central Command “Yoel Strick” stated that “this decision was necessary to keep the security of the state and public safety”
Samer and Hijazi decided to protest the deportation order by staying at the Red Cross offices in Jerusalem. Their rejection and protest against the order doesn’t not come as a method of personal survival but to create an example of resistance against the discriminatory practices of the occupation against Jerusalemites and their families. The occupation authorities issued more than six deportation orders against Jerusalemites and threatened dozen others with deportation since the beginning of the current uprising.


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