Friday, March 2, 2012

Israel: Revoke Rights Defender’s Travel Ban

Shawan Jabarin Given One-Time Permit to Travel

Human Rights Watch
March 2, 2012

"(Jerusalem) – Having decided to permit Palestinian human rights defender Shawan Jabarin to travel abroad from the West Bank for the first time in six years, Israel should now revoke his travel ban, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said today.

On February 22, Israel’s State Prosecutor agreed to a “temporary exception” to the ban, allowing Jabarin to travel to Geneva at the invitation of the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression.

The two organizations said that the Israeli authorities had never produced any evidence to justify banning Jabarin from travelling, and should follow this belated “exception” by lifting the arbitrary ban entirely.

According to international human rights standards, any restrictions on travel should be issued in only exceptional circumstances, for reasons stated clearly and publicly, and be open to legal challenge. The refusal of the Israeli authorities to make public any evidence to substantiate the reasons for the travel ban means that Jabarin has been denied a meaningful opportunity to challenge the ban in court......"

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