Int’l jurist: Palestinian detainees are hostages under international law

Int’l jurist: Palestinian detainees are hostages under international law

 CAIRO, — International law expert Hasan Omar stated that the Palestinian detainees in Isreli jails are not prisoners, but they are hostages being held by the Israeli occupation state and they must be released according to the principles of international law.

In an interview published by the journal of Muslim Palestine, Omar explained that the prisoner under the third Geneva convention is the one who is captured by an adversary during military operations and thus he is subject to the provisions of this convention which governs his release after the end of military actions.

"The hostage is every person, whether civilian or military, being kidnapped during military operations and subject to the provisions of the New York convention issued in 1979 which identified the kidnapping as a crime of international terrorism and demanded the release of hostages and the prosecution of hostage-taker," the law expert added.

He pointed out that the Arab states should pay attention to the amendments which were made to the conventions related to prisoners.

"Based on the understanding of these amendments, they (Arabs) will realize fully that all Palestinians in Israeli jails are subject to one legal description that they are kidnapped hostages who have to be released immediately," the expert elaborated. 

The expert considered that the issue of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is different from the legal position of Palestinian hostages because he is a mercenary soldier and the Palestinian resistance has the right to capture him and extradite him to his native country France.

"The capturing of mercenaries is the resistance fighters’ genuine right according to the provision of international law, which states that if the resistance fighters detain anyone of the occupation state’s soldiers, their act will be legal and part of the resistance," he noted.