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Palestinian held in Ghana: ‘I was tortured for 35 days’

Mahran Baajour, Palestinian businessman who has disappared in Ghana [File photo]
Mahran Baajour, Palestinian businessman who has disappared in Ghana [File photo]

The Ghanaian authorities must open an investigation into the kidnapping and torturing Palestinian Mahran Baajour and bring those responsible to justice, Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) said in a statement today.

Mahran Baajour, before being kidnapped and tortured [File photo]

Thirty-nine-year-old Baajour has been subjected to enforced disappearance and torture in Ghana by security agents, believed to be Mossad agents, since his arrest on 13 December 2018 until his release in March 2019.

Baajour arrived in Ghana on 13 December 2018 on a business trip. He was arrested after leaving the airport of Ghanaian capital Accra, without justification. He was arrested along with two other Ghanaian nationals who were at the airport to receive him; they were taken to an unknown location. The two Ghanaian men were later released and they informed Baajour’s family of his arrest.

Mahran Baajour, after being kidnapped and tortured [File photo]

Mahran Baajour, after being kidnapped and tortured [File photo]

“He was detained at the airport and when the family asked about his whereabouts, the reply was that he wasn’t in their custody,” his brother Jehad Baajour told reporters.

READ: Ghana government attitude towards Mahran Baajour’s abduction repugnant – Minority

One of Mahran’s brothers who lives in Denmark subsequently flew to Ghana in a bid to locate him, but Ghanaian intelligence services again denied he was in the country.

AOHR UK confirmed that Baajour was “subjected to physical torture, beating all over his body, psychological torture, insult and verbal abuse by white-skinned officers speaking little Arabic”.

“Some officers’ clothes had Hebrew writings on it.”

In his statement to the organization, Baajour said: “As soon as I left the airport in Accra, four cars surrounded the car I was in.”

They arrested us without showing a legal warrant, without disclosing the agency they belong to and took us to another place, where they exchanged cars. They took me to an unknown place, I still do not know, and I was handcuffed the whole time.

“White-skinned men, who knew little Arabic, started investigating me. They were 14 men from different nationalities as they told me. I noticed on a coat, which belongs to one of them, Hebrew badges, Hebrew written papers, and some of them used Hebrew words like ‘Shekel’.”

“I was interrogated about the situation of the refugees in Lebanon, the Lebanese and Palestinian political forces, some terrorist activities and operations that were not related to me and I told them so. They tortured me in various ways for 35 days.”

Baajour added: “They detained me in a narrow room, 1×1 meters, deprived me of sleep for up to three consecutive days, poured cold water on me and beat me on the head strongly, in addition to handcuffing my hands and feet all the time. They threatened me with kidnapping my 12-year-old daughter and killing her, while verbally abusing me.”

READ: Arab League discusses Israel’s Africa charm offensive

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AfricaGhanaIsraelMiddle EastNewsPalestine
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