Israel Extends ‘Administrative Detention’ of Palestinian-French Lawyer

A Palestinian-French lawyer, Salah Hamouri, will spend at least three more months detained without charge under a controversial Israeli occupation practice. Hamouri has been arrested and jailed by Israeli authorities on several occasions, including in 2005.

Att. Salah Hamouri (Photo: Syndicat des avocats de France)

Israeli authorities overnight Sunday-Monday extended the detention of Hamouri, 37, under what is known as “administrative detention”. The practice allows suspects to be detained for renewable periods of up to six months.

In April Hamouri, along with rights groups, filed a complaint in France against surveillance firm NSO Group for having illegally infiltrated his mobile phone with the spyware Pegasus. He is one of several Palestinian activists whose phones were hacked using the Pegasus malware, according to a report in November by human rights groups.

Several French human rights organizations and unions, among them ACAT, Amnesty International France, CFDT, CGT, Confédération paysanne, FIDH, Fédération Syndicale Unitaire (FSU), Human Rights Watch, Plateforme des ONG Françaises pour la Palestine, Solidaires, Syndicat des avocats de France (SAF), Union nationale des étudiants de France (UNEF), published a joint statement for the liberation of Hamouri.

“We must act to terminate his administrative detention. We must act to prevent his deportation from Jerusalem, his city of birth and residence. We must act to enable his wife, banned from entering Israeli territory until 2025, to visit her husband and communicate with him. We must act to ensure that the Israeli Ministry of Interior examines their family reunification request, submitted repeatedly, to allow this family to live together. And finally, at the start of a new presidential term, we must act to demonstrate France’s attachment to human rights,” they said.