26 Nov. '08: Indictment filed against policemen who seriously injured Palestinian in Israel

26 Nov 2008
16 Oct 2013

Update: On 13 February 2013, the Beersheba Magistrate Court convicted Israeli mounted policeman Dani Haveri of grievous bodily harm to Fadi Darab’i. On 6 October 2013 Haveri was sentenced. Despite the gravity of Haveri's actions and their consequences, Justice Adam Or of the Beersheba Magistrates Court sentenced him to only six months of community service. He received none of the jail time demanded by the DIP. Haveri was also senteced to pay 24,000 NIS [approx. 6,800USD] in compensation to Darab’i. An article in Israeli news site ynet reported that the DIP, which filed the charges, is considering appealing the sentence.

Fadi Darabi'

On 28 October 2008, the Department for the Investigation of Police filed an indictment against two policemen who assaulted Fadi Darab'i at a construction site in Gan Yavneh, a town located south of Tel Aviv.

On the morning of 13 April 2008, policemen came to a construction site in Gan Yavneh where Darab'i, a 24-year-old resident of Dura, a village in Hebron District, was working. Two of the policemen, Iyad Huzeyl and Dani Haveri, went over to him and demanded that he tell them the name of his employer. Darab'i replied that the employer was not at the site. One of the policemen bent Darab'i's arm behind his back and asked him again who his employer was. The other policeman, who stood in front of Darab'i, kicked him hard in the groin.

A short while afterwards, the policemen took Darab'i, along with 15 other laborers from the construction site, to a police station. Although Darab'i and other detainees requested the policemen several times to summon an ambulance because of the intense pain Darab'i was suffering as a result of the blow to his groin, the policemen refused. The detainees were released a few hours later. Darab'i then went to ‘Aliyah Hospital, in Hebron, where he underwent surgery the same day. Due to the severity of the injury, the surgeons were forced to amputate one of his testicles. He was hospitalized for three days.

Following the assault, B'Tselem wrote to the DIP demanding an investigation. The indictment, filed as stated on 28 October, charges the two policemen with causing grievous injury.

Filing of indictments against security forces for assaulting Palestinians is exceptional, although violence against Palestinians has for some time been part of the reality of life in the Occupied Territories.

Israeli officials routinely condemn beatings and abuse of Palestinians. However, the law-enforcement authorities avoid serious, in-depth investigation into  allegations of security forces' violence and do not prosecute, or take any action, against the persons responsible. This policy conveys to security forces in the field the message that the bodies and dignity of Palestinians are of no value, and that perpetrators of such violence will not pay any price for their acts.