Q: The French-Palestinian lawyer Salah Hamouri, whom the Israeli authorities arrested on March 4, was sentenced to four months of administrative detention on March 10. On March 24, L’Humanité asked you if France would respond publicly to obtain his release. The gist of your reply was: “The Israeli authorities were asked to provide explanations for this latest arrest and to ensure that all of Mr. Hamouri’s rights are respected and that he is able to exercise all legal remedies.”
One month later, we would like to know what explanations you were provided by the Israeli authorities, given that neither Salah Hamouri nor his lawyers have access to the file in accordance with the peculiarities and denial of rights that go along with administrative detention. What were your responses? And in fact is France demanding Salah Hamouri’s immediate and unconditional release?
A: We have been closely monitoring Mr. Hamouri’s situation for a long time and at a high level. We have approached the Israeli authorities several times to find a permanent solution to this situation, at long last.
Following his latest arrest, staff from the French Consulate-general in Jerusalem were able to visit him on March 21 under the terms of consular protection and again spoke with the Israeli authorities. We continue to mobilize all our efforts to obtain explanations on the reasons for Mr. Hamouri’s detention and to ensure that all of his rights are respected and that he is able to exercise all legal remedies.
We want him to be released and allowed to continue leading a normal life in Jerusalem, where he was born and where he resides, and for his wife and children to be allowed to rejoin him there.