Friday, March 22, 2019

  • Friday, March 22, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Amnesty International issued a press release demanding that Hamas end its crackdown on protesters in Gaza.

Hamas has attacked protesters many times throughout the past decade, and Amnesty was silent. Amnesty only seems to have gotten upset because one of its own members was detained and interrogated by Hamas.

Today, an Amnesty International Research Consultant, Hind Khoudary, has been detained and interrogated by the security forces of the Ministry of Interior for working with Amnesty International. Her interrogation lasted for three hours during which four male interrogators subjected her to ill-treatment. The interrogators used abusive language and warned her not to carry out human rights research and threatened to prosecute her for spying and working as a foreign agent.

“The crackdown on freedom of expression and the use of torture in Gaza has reached alarming new levels. Over the past few days, we have seen shocking human rights violations carried out by Hamas security forces against peaceful protesters, journalists and rights workers,” said Saleh Higazi, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International.
The only times that Amnesty has ever used the word "shocking" about Hamas is now, and when Hamas executed "collaborators" in Gaza.

Compare this language to how Amnesty chided Hamas after a bus bombing in Israel in 2016 - and tried to exonerate it at the same time:

After the Hamas movement in Bethlehem claimed the person who detonated a bomb aboard a Jerusalem bus earlier this week as a member, Amnesty International reiterates that deliberate attacks on civilians can never be justified, and calls on Hamas to  condemn all such attacks.
On the evening of 18 April, 20 people were wounded when a Palestinian man detonated a bomb on an Israeli bus in Jerusalem. As of the evening of 21 April, three of those injured were still in intensive care, according to the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz. Abd al-Hamid Abu Srour, a 19-year-old Palestinian man from Aida refugee camp in Bethlehem who was identified as the attacker, succumbed to his wounds late on 20 April.
On 21 April, the Hamas movement stated that the attacker was a member and one of its “committed activists” in Bethlehem. Israel police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld stated that a “Hamas terrorist” carried out the attack, and the Israel Security Agency announced the arrest in the Bethlehem area of several “Hamas activists” suspected of involvement in the attack. While it does not appear that Hamas’ leadership or its military wing in Gaza ordered the attack, the involvement of the Hamas movement, possibly including members of its military wing in Bethlehem or elsewhere, is a worrying development. Hamas, including its political leadership in Gaza and elsewhere, must clearly condemn all attacks targeting civilians. Such attacks can never be justified and represent a serious violation of international humanitarian law. 
This is a perfunctory demand for an absurd result - that Hamas condemn its own people. There is no passion when Amnesty reports on Hamas outrages against Israelis.  The only language showing anger at the movement is when it attacks other Palestinians and internationals. And even that mild wrist slapping of Hamas in the bus bombing  was accompanied by accusations of Israel extrajudiciously killing Palestinians (during the "knife intifada") - effectively neutralizing any tiny demand on Hamas by saying that Israel is worse.

This week's press release is, as far as I can tell, the only time Amnesty didn't mention Israel when saying Hamas did something not completely in line with human rights.



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