Hebron massacre: the ICJ releases its report

Today, the ICJreleased the findings of its mission to Israel and the Occupied Territories concerning the Hebron Massacre and aftermath.

The 15-page report, The Hebron Massacre and Aftermath, welcomes the establishment of an Israeli Commission of Inquiry into the Massacre and states that persons with pertinent information should submit it to this Commission.

The Report urges the Commission of Inquiry to go beyond investigating what happened inside the Haram al-Ibrahimi on 25 February 1994. The Report concludes that the Massacre cannot be separated from the context of violence by Israeli settlers in the Occupied Territories and calls on the Conunission of Inquiry to investigate and report on the arming of settlers, and the apparent inaction of Israeli forces, police, and courts in the face of settler violence.

The Report also urges the Commission of Inquiry to examine the use of force by the Israeli military in relation to the aftermath of the Massacre. At least 21 Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces in the six days following the Massacre. The Report urges the Israeli Government to respect the internationally accepted standards of necessity and proportionality when using force in the Occupied Territories. The Mission calls upon the international community to pay close attention to the present situation in the Occupied Territories.

The Mission voices its concern with the arrest and detention of Mr. Sha’wan Jabarin, a staff member of al-Haq, the ICJ’s West Bank affiliate. Mr. Jabarin greatly assisted the Mission. In the absence of any specific recognised charge against him, the Report calls for his immediate release.

The Mission, which took place from 7 to 10 March 1994, was composed of Sir William Goodhart, Q.C. (ICJ Member, UK) and Mr. Peter Wilborn (ICJ Secretariat, Geneva), While in Israel and the Occupied Territories, the Mission met with various individuals including victims and eyewitnesses of the Massacre and its aftermath, as well as Justice Shamgar, the President of the Israeli Supreme Coun and Chairman of the Israeli Commission of Inquiry.

The Hebron Massacre and Aftermath is available in Geneva from the ICJ Secretariat, in London from Justice, the British Section of the ICJ. and in the West Bank from aI-Haq, the ICJ’s West Bank affiliate,

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