Expelled Palestinian woman allowed to return to West Bank

Intissar ‘Ajouri

In a conclusion of a session held at the Israeli military court in the Erez area on 24 February 2004, the Israeli Military Appeal Committee reached a decision to allow Intissar �Ajouri to return to her home in the West Bank city of Nablus after she had been transferred to the Gaza Strip.

According to the decision, which was issued in written form on 1 March 2004 and received by PCHR on 2 March 2004, the committee specified 3 March 2004 as the date for �Ajouri�s return to her home in �Askar refugee camp in Nablus.�

A PCHR lawyer, Ahlam al-Aqra�, accompanied Kifah and Intissar �Ajouri to the committee�s session, but Israeli occupying forces did not allow her to cross Erez crossing to attend the session.� Two lawyers of the Center for the Defense of the Individual�s Rights (Hamoked) � Tamar Peleg and Yussi Filfson � attended the session with the ï¿½Ajouris.

The session in which the decision was taken was the third session held by the Israeli Military Appeal Committee to review the military order transferring Kifah and Intissar �Ajouri from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip.� According to the aforementioned order, which was issued against the �Ajouris in August 2002, the �Ajouris were to be transferred from Nablus to Gaza for two years with the Israeli Military Appeal Committee holding periodic sessions to review the order.�

The committee had held two sessions in February and August 2003 to review the military order against the �Ajouris.� In the first session, it decided that the military order would continue to be effective.� In the second session, the committee decided that the transfer order would be effective until the end of October 2003, but did not issue an official decision in October, claiming that there was an escalation in the �security situation� which had originally justified the transfer order.�

Intissar �Ajouri will travel back home 6 months before the end of her transfer period, while her brother Kifah will wait to travel back home umtil August 2004, when the period of his transfer ends.�

Israel escalated the use of unlawful transfer orders in 2003, and transferred dozens of Palestinian civilians from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip.� PCHR has pursued most of the cases against these civilians.�

PCHR reiterates its condemnation for the policy of unlawful transfer adopted by Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians and calls upon the international community to confront this policy, which violates international humanitarian law.

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