On 21 March 2022, the Palestinian Human Rights Council, Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, the Association France Palestine Solidarite, and the Platform of French NGOs for Palestine submitted a joint urgent appeal to the UN Special Procedures on the arbitrary arrest and imminent risk of forcible deportation of Palestinian HRD and lawyer Salah Hammouri. On 7 March 2022, Israeli Occupation Forces stormed Salah's home in Kufr Aqab, north of Jerusalem, arbitrarily arresting him and transferring him to Ofer military base

On 9 March 2022, Salah appeared in Ofer military court via video conference, where the military judge ruled to extend his detention for an additional 48 hours to issue an administrative detention order. The following day, on 10 March 2022, the Israeli military commander issued a three-month[1] administrative detention order against Salah, without charge or trial, based on "secret information." Notably, 500 Palestinian administrative detainees are currently undertaking a collective boycott of Israeli military courts to protest the Israeli occupation's illegal systematic, and arbitrary practice of administrative detention.[2] Salah joins the boycott, refusing to participate in the military court proceedings related to his administrative detention and requesting his legal counsel do the same.

The arbitrary arrest and detention of Salah Hammouri are made more urgent and exceptional in light of the Israeli Minister of Interior's unlawful decision, on 18 October 2021, to revoke his permanent residency status in Jerusalem based on a "breach of allegiance to the State of Israel."[3] The initiation of his residency revocation under Amendment No. 30 to the Entry into Israel Law of 1952 entails profound violations of international law and puts him at imminent risk of forced deportation. [4]

Amid legal procedures and advocacy challenging the Israeli occupation regime's gross violations amounting to war crimes and the crime of apartheid, Salah's case has been increasingly highlighted on the international fora by UN Special Rapporteurs,[5] NGOs,[6] and human rights organizations.[7]. For that, Israeli occupation authorities have systematically harassed and targeted Salah, a vocal Palestinian human rights advocate, to repress his right to free expression and delegitimize and discredit his work as a human rights defender.

Salah Hammouri's case evidences the Israeli occupation and apartheid regime's widespread and systematic practice of illegal population transfer and demographic manipulation, as manifested through laws, policies, and practices, to maintain their institutionalized regime of racial domination and oppression over the Palestinian people.

Accordingly, the joint submission calls for the immediate intervention of the relevant UN Special Procedure mandates to address the arbitrary arrest and continued punitive residency revocation of Salah Hammouri as it represents a step towards its wider application against HRDs, peaceful dissent, and Palestinians of Jerusalem more generally to achieve demographic goals. Our organizations urged the UN Special Procedures to:

  1. Demand Israel, as an Occupying Power, to reverse its decision to revoke the permanent Jerusalem residency status of Salah Hammouri; reiterating the illegality of residency revocation based on "breach of allegiance" leading to the forcible transfer of Palestinian civilians, which is a war crime and crime against humanity under the Rome Statute of the ICC;
  2. Call on Israel to unconditionally and immediately release Salah Hammouri from administrative detention, and further, put an end to his prolonged persecution and all policies and measures of intimidation and harassment against him;
  3. Call on Israel to immediately repeal its Entry into Israel Law (1952), which has been used to further the Israeli policy of population transfer and achieve demographic goals in Jerusalem in violation of Palestinians' fundamental rights, including their right to freedom of movement and residence, and the right to leave their country and to return;
  4. Urge Israel to immediately cease any and all practices and policies intended to intimidate and silence human rights defenders, in violation of their right to freedom of expression, including through arbitrary detention, torture and other ill-treatment, institutionalized hate speech and incitement, residency revocation, deportations, and other coercive or punitive measures;
  5. Require the immediate initiation of an investigation into the illegal infiltration of Human Rights Defenders' phones and all the other victims that have been in communication with the targeted HRD;
  6. Require an immediate moratorium on the sale, transfer, and use of all forms of surveillance technology, particularly NSO Group's Pegasus spyware, until a full independent investigation of its operation within Palestine is carried out by the UN to identify the scope of its surveillance activities carried out against Palestinian human rights defenders, and their ties to the Israeli government; and
  7. Call for international justice and accountability, including at the International Criminal Court, for Israel's widespread and systematic human rights violations and alleged international crimes, including the crime of population transfer and the crime of apartheid, which constitutes a crime against humanity.


[1] On 10 March 2022, the Israeli military commander issued a four-month administrative detention order, however, later on 13 March 2020, Salah’s legal counsel was notified that the administrative detention order was faultily dated and corrected the duration of the order to three months instead of four months.

[2] Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, “‘Our Decision is Freedom…No to Administrative Detention’: Palestinian Administrative Detainees Declare Boycott of Israeli Military Courts” 15 February 2022, https://www.addameer.org/index.php/news/4662#_ftn1

[3] See Supra 1; Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, “Joint Urgent Appeal to the United Nations Special Procedures on the Imminent Threat of Forcible Transfer/Deportation of Salah Hammouri for ‘Breach of Allegiance,’” 30 September 2020. Available at: https://www.addameer.org/news/human-rights-organisations-send-urgent-ap…- un-special-procedures-imminent-threat-forcible.

[4] Al-Haq, “Punitive Residency Revocation: The Most Recent Tool of Forcible Transfer”, 17 March 2022. Available at: Punitive Residency Revocation: the Most Recent Tool of Forcible Transfer (alhaq.org)

[5] UN OHCHR, “Israel must safeguard human rights defenders in Occupied Palestinian Territory and within its borders – UN expert”, 11 August 2021. Available at: https://www.ohchr.org/en/press-releases/2021/08/israel-must-safeguard-human-rights-defenders-occupied-palestinian-territory?LangID=E&NewsID=27375

[6] Front Line Defenders, “Human Rights Defender Facing Deportation for Alleged “Breach of Allegiance”, 28 February 2022. Available at: https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/en/case/human-rights-defender-facing-deportation-alleged-%E2%80%9Cbreach-allegiance%E2%80%9D 

[7] Human Rights Watch, “Spyware Used to Hack Palestinian Rights Defenders”, 8 November 2022. Available at: https://www.hrw.org/news/2021/11/08/spyware-used-hack-palestinian-rights-defenders