We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, write to demand the immediate cancellation of the expulsion order against Khalida Jarrar, Palestinian Legislative Council member, prisoners’ rights activist and political leader.
On August 20 at 1:30 AM, Ms. Jarrar’s Ramallah home was raided by 50 Israeli occupation soldiers who presented her with a “special supervision order,” written in Hebrew and read aloud in Arabic. This military order, signed off by an Israeli military court on the basis of unspecified and secret evidence, orders Jarrar expelled from her Ramallah home and forcibly transferred and confined within the city limits of Jericho for an initial period of six months; it was deemed effective within 24 hours.
This order is a blatant injustice and is part and parcel of the ongoing Israeli occupation attempt to silence the voices of Palestinian political leaders and to confine and expel Palestinians. From the expulsion of over 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland in 1948 – including members of Khalida Jarrar’s family – and the denial of their right to return for over 66 years; to the attempted deportation of Palestinian mayors outside Palestine; to the stripping of the Jerusalem ID’s of elected PLC members Mohammad Abu Tir, Ahmad Atoun, Mohammed Totah and Khaled Abu Arafah; to this expulsion order, there is a long line of Israeli attempts to threaten Palestinian life through displacement and expulsion.
Khalida Jarrar has refused to sign the expulsion order, saying “you, the occupation, are killing our Palestinian people. You practice mass arrests, demolish homes, kidnap people from their homes and deport them. It is you who must leave our home.” She has moved to stay in a “protest tent” outside the legislative council building in Ramallah. She announced that she is going to stay and continue her work from there until the decision is revoked.
Jarrar is a Palestinian political leader in the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a Palestinian Leftist party; she is a frequent leader and participant in demonstrations and popular actions for Palestinian freedom. She is a long-time Palestinian political prisoners’ advocate, former executive director of Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association and a member of its board; she chairs the Prisoners’ Committee of the Palestinian Legislative Council.
She is also active in the Palestinian women’s movement from her earliest days as a university student organizing with other women students to challenge the occupation. A feminist and prominent voice for the defense and expansion of women’s rights, she is a leading organizer of International Women’s Day events in Palestine and coordinates closely with Palestinian women’s organization. “Palestinian women are full partners in the Palestinian struggle,” she emphasizes.
Since 1998, she has been forbidden to travel outside occupied Palestine; when she needed medical treatment in Jordan in 2010, she struggled for months in a public campaign before finally receiving her treatment.
The forced transfer of Khalida Jarrar violates international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention, which prohibits so-called “assigned residence” unless it is “absolutely necessary” and forbids forced collective or individual transfer of protected persons from one area of occupied territory to another. The military order for Jarrar’s forced expulsion contains only vaguely worded references to “intelligence information” and “protecting the security of the region.”
It is clear that Khalida Jarrar is being targeted in order to suppress Palestinian political organizing – particularly as she has been a visible and prominent participant in the West Bank demonstrations in support of Palestinians in Gaza, denouncing the occupation military’s killing of over 2,000 Palestinians.
The invasion of Jarrar’s home and the delivery of the expulsion “special supervision order” took place within so-called “Area A,” allegedly under the complete security control of the Palestinian Authority under the Oslo Agreements. Despite this, Israeli occupying forces were allowed to enter Ramallah and invade Jarrar’s home; as Addameer notes, “the so-called ‘security co-ordination’ between Palestinian Authority security forces and Israeli occupying forces allowed for the expulsion of an elected representative of the Palestinian people, an elected representative who has continuously called for an end to such ‘coordination.’”
Khalida Jarrar has been targeted for an expulsion order because she is a Palestinian woman, a Palestinian parliamentarian, and a Palestinian leader. Today, we stand with justice, we stand with Palestine, and we stand with Khalida to demand the immediate cancellation of the “special supervision” expulsion order.
Visit http://samidoun.ca/khalidajarrar for more information and to add individual and organizational endorsements to this important and pressing campaign for justice.
OPIRG Carleton Board of Directors