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UN probes Israel’s expulsion of French-Palestinian rights lawyer Salah Hamouri

June 9, 2023 at 12:40 pm

Salah Hamouri, Franco-Palestinian lawyer on October 1, 2020 [ABBAS MOMANI/AFP via Getty Images]

The UN is gathering evidence that could potentially be used in future prosecutions of those involved in Israel’s expulsion of French-Palestinian human rights lawyer, Salah Hamouri.

A high-level team of United Nations investigators said it was preserving a list of possible perpetrators behind Hamouri’s forced deportation, including the El-Al Airline used to fly him to France.

The 38-year-old was long held without charge in Israel on accusations that he was a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), considered a terrorist organisation by Israel, the US and EU.

Hamouri, who denied the claim and maintains his innocence, was expelled after his East Jerusalem residency permit was revoked for an alleged “breach of allegiance” to Israel, in a move immediately decried by the UN rights office as a “war crime”.

“Demanding allegiance from protected people in occupied territory is a reprehensible violation of international humanitarian law,” Chris Sidoti, one of the three commissioners, said in a statement.

In the commission’s second report to the UN Human Rights Council since it was established in 2021, it said it had “preserved, on a list of possible perpetrators, information about the individuals who may bear criminal responsibility.”

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