Richard Falk, 1 March 2013
What follows is a news report prompted by my press release on the shocking treatment of Arafat Jaradat who died while being held in an Israel prison.
27 February 2013 – A United Nations human rights expert today called for an international investigation into the death of Palestinian prisoner Arafat Jaradat, who died in Israeli custody just a few days after his arrest.
“The death of a prisoner during interrogation is always a cause for concern, but in this case, when Israel has shown a pattern and practice of prisoner abuse, the need for outside, credible investigation is more urgent than ever,” stressed the UN Special Rapporteur for human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, Richard Falk.
“The best approach might be the creation of an international forensic team under the auspices of the UN Human Rights Council,” he added in a news release.
Both the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, and the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, have also called for an independent investigation into Mr. Jaradat’s death, which occurred on Saturday.
Mr. Falk pointed to the assessment made by the Palestinian Authority’s chief pathologist, Dr. Saber Aloul, who observed the autopsy carried out inside Israel, and found there were clear signs of torture on the body of the previously healthy, 30-year-old detainee.
Israeli officials initially claimed Mr. Jaradat died of a heart attack, but the preliminary autopsy findings did not include a cause of death, noted the news release.