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The High Court of Justice summarily rejects HaMoked’s petition for regular phone contact between Palestinian minors incarcerated by Israel and their families

On March 31, 2019, HaMoked petitioned the High Court of Justice (HCJ) to instruct the Israel Prison Service (IPS) to allow incarcerated Palestinian minors who are classified as “security inmates” to maintain regular telephone contact with their families, even if subject to close supervision and individual security checks.

In the judgment of July 1, 2019, the panel of justices adopted the IPS’ position, ruling that “The proper course for challenging IPS’ resolutions and procedures, is by filing an individual prisoner petition to the District Court”. This, despite HaMoked’s claim that it is unreasonable to expect minors to undertake this sort of principled legal action, particularly as many of them are still preoccupied with their criminal process for much of their incarceration. The HCJ also addressed the “pilot program” revealed by the IPS for the first time in its response to the petition, “in which framework the possibility of phone contact will be expanded.” The HCJ said “it is to be hoped this pilot program will soon be launched”.

In its brief judgement, the court completely ignored the current reality, where the classification of minors as “security inmates”, coupled with their illegal incarceration inside Israel, means that the minors are denied the right to have the support of their parents not only during their interrogation, but also in the months that follow, well into the court proceedings, until their parents manage to obtain a military permit to enter Israel “for the purpose of visiting an inmate”. (02) 627 1698   (02) 627 6317

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