Tell the PA: free speech is not a crime


Sign the letter to President Abbas and Fateh Central Committee Dr. Mohammed Shtayyeh: Drop the charges against Palestinian Human Rights Defender Issa Amro!

Dear President Abbas and Dr. Mohammed Shtayyeh,

It is appalling that the Palestinian Authority is putting Human Rights Defender Issa Amro on trial for peacefully voicing his opinion.

On Thursday 28 March, 2019 Amro will appear in PA court for a Facebook post from 2017 in which he said that the Palestinian Authority should not be arresting journalists criticizing the government. For this Amro is facing up to two years in prison and a fine.

Amro is well known for his human rights work to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine and remove the fanatical and violent illegal settlers from Hebron. But last month, rather than supporting Amro, Fatah released a press statement urging civil society organizations in Hebron to boycott Amro and his colleagues at Youth Against Settlements, warning those who don’t abide that they would face retribution.

Amro has received death threats on social media and over the phone from supporters of Fatah, such that he fears for his life and personal safety. The PA has also threatened those close to Amro that they must stop working with him Amro and Youth Against Settlements (YAS).

It is shocking that the PA and Fatah, rather than supporting Amro’s work against the occupation and for the protection of his own people, are threatening and prosecuting him. This is shameful and counter to the international values of freedom, justice, and equality.

Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International Saleh Higazi said of the PA’s prosecution of Amro:

“It is disgraceful that Issa Amro is facing a prison term simply for expressing his views promoting human rights online. The Palestinian authorities should drop all charges against him immediately. Criticising an official should never be a crime. If imprisoned Issa Amro would be a Prisoner of Conscience.”

Amro is charged with disturbing “public order” under Palestine’s draconian Electronic Crimes Law, “causing strife” and “insulting the higher authorities” under the 1960 Jordanian Penal code, still enforced in the West Bank.

We call on your as president of the Palestinian Authority to immediately see that all charges are dropped against Amro and see that his safety, and the safety of Youth Against Settlements and everyone working with them, is protected. We also call on you to see that the PA and Fatah support Amro and Youth Against Settlements nonviolent work to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine and human rights abuses endured by the Palestinian people.


Who's signing

Cees van Dijk
Dorothee Mages
Roger Morton
Sue Keller
Odile Pelet
Flavia Lepre
Marian Connolly
Ghazala Manzoor
Marion Roberts
bodil nilsson
Lois Richardson
Geneviève Coudrais
Michael Rüter
Brigitte Sondermeier
Bill Hessell
Lucas Sebreghts
Giuliana Panciroli
Steven Blakemore
John Campbell
lionel Burman
gary boyle
Janet Fuller
Tom Wolkenberg
Ed Rukab
Dennis O'Brien
Simon Vrouwe
david zide
Haroon Sarwar
George MacSween
1,739 signatures

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Showing 1617 reactions

  • Cees van Dijk
    @vanDijkCees tweeted link to this page. 2019-03-29 17:15:51 -0400
    Dear @AbbasPresident & Fatah @DrShtayyeh: free speech is not a crime. The PA must drop the charges against Palestinian Human Rights Defender @IssaAmroAmro's work to end Israel's occupation & human rights abuses should be supported! #StandWithIssa
  • Cees van Dijk
    signed 2019-03-29 17:15:32 -0400
  • Dorothee Mages
    signed 2019-03-29 17:03:38 -0400
  • Roger Morton
    signed 2019-03-29 16:54:49 -0400
  • Sue Keller
    signed 2019-03-29 16:14:50 -0400
  • Odile Pelet
    signed 2019-03-29 16:03:39 -0400
  • Flavia Lepre
    signed 2019-03-29 15:48:31 -0400
  • Marian Connolly
    signed 2019-03-29 15:46:54 -0400
    Marian Connolly
  • Ghazala Manzoor
    signed 2019-03-29 14:50:49 -0400
  • Marion Roberts
    signed via 2019-03-29 14:04:53 -0400
  • bodil nilsson
    signed 2019-03-29 13:48:54 -0400
  • Lois Richardson
    signed 2019-03-29 13:26:22 -0400
  • Geneviève Coudrais
    signed 2019-03-29 13:25:28 -0400
  • Michael Rüter
    signed 2019-03-29 13:21:38 -0400
  • Brigitte Sondermeier
    signed 2019-03-29 13:13:19 -0400
  • Bill Hessell
    signed via 2019-03-29 13:08:00 -0400
  • Lucas Sebreghts
    signed 2019-03-29 12:07:08 -0400
  • Giuliana Panciroli
    signed 2019-03-29 11:59:02 -0400
  • Steven Blakemore
    signed 2019-03-29 11:50:37 -0400
  • John Campbell
    signed 2019-03-29 11:25:01 -0400
    John Campbell
  • lionel Burman
    signed 2019-03-29 10:40:28 -0400
  • gary boyle
    signed 2019-03-29 10:26:30 -0400
  • Janet Fuller
    signed 2019-03-29 10:20:31 -0400
  • Tom Wolkenberg
    signed 2019-03-29 10:06:42 -0400
  • Ed Rukab
    signed 2019-03-29 09:44:55 -0400
  • Dennis O'Brien
    signed 2019-03-29 09:13:06 -0400
  • Simon Vrouwe
    signed 2019-03-29 08:39:57 -0400
  • david zide
    signed 2019-03-29 08:12:59 -0400
  • Haroon Sarwar
    signed 2019-03-29 07:53:26 -0400
  • George MacSween
    signed 2019-03-29 07:48:19 -0400