On 28 April 2022, the Israeli military commander renewed a 6-month administrative detention order against Bashir Khairi, 80 years old, despite the lack of charges, Bashir’s old age, and his ongoing boycott of the Israeli military courts in protest of his arbitrary administrative detention. The boycott, precipitating the current mass boycott by Palestinian administrative detainees, has surpassed 120 days.
Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) first arrested Bashir Khairi on 29 October 2021, after 15 soldiers stormed his home in the middle of the night, transferring him to Ofer prison for interrogation. During interrogation, the officer threatened to transfer him to administrative detention if he did not confess. Khairi’s detention and interrogation was repeatedly extended by the Israeli military court until 15 November 2021, when the Israeli military prosecutor submitted a list of charges against Mr. Khairi relating to his alleged association in an organization deemed "unlawful" under Israeli military orders. Still, noting Mr. Khairi's old age, health condition, and the dated charges laid against him, the Israeli military court ordered his release on bail on 21 November 2021.
On 7 December 2021, the Israeli military prosecutor issued a 6-month administrative detention order, without charge or trial, against Bashir Khairi, until 28 April 2022, based on "secret evidence" that he constituted an imminent "security threat" to the region. The confirmation hearing for the administrative detention order was set for 9 December 2021, then postponed to 14 December. In response to the repeated extensions and the obvious farcical nature of the military judicial proceedings, Bashir Khairi announced in a letter, on the same day, his intent to boycott all further military court proceedings. The confirmation hearing for the administrative detention order was held on 26 December 2021 without the presence of Bashir Khairi or his legal counsel, where the military judge confirmed his administrative detention order for the entire period, claiming that the detainee was active in an “illegal association” and posed a threat to the security of the region.
The arbitrary arrest and continued detention of 80-year-old lawyer Bashir al-Khairi point to the Israeli occupation regime’s systematic and arbitrary practice of administrative detention, which is used as a tool by the Israeli military prosecution to continue to hold Palestinian detainees even after they fail to keep them in prison, after submitting the indictment, and rare rulings for the release of the detainee on bail. Israeli occupation authorities employ administrative detention as a punitive, and even coercive, measure, rather than as a precautionary one.
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association condemns the Israeli occupation authorities' persistent endeavors to incarcerate him without any legal basis or guarantees of fair trial standards. This is especially highlighted by the arbitrary and dated charges submitted against him on 15 November 2021, which, when proven insufficient to incarcerate him, is subsequently turned into an administrative detention order without charge or trial.
The Israeli Occupation's systematic and arbitrary administrative detention practices stand in stark violation of international law, particularly relating to internationally recognized principles of a fair trial and its extensive use as a form of collective and criminal punishment. Israeli occupation authorities continue to place Palestinians under administrative detention indefinitely based on 'secret material' that is neither disclosed to the detainees nor their lawyers. In addition, administrative detention is regularly employed as a coercive and retaliatory measure targeting Palestinian activists, civil society members, students, former prisoners, and their family members.