Today in 1999: Torture banned in GSS interrogations
5 September 2017
On this day, Israel’s High Court banned the use of specific forms of torture employed by the General Security Service (Shin Bet) during interrogations, in a landmark ruling litigated by the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel and filed together with six other Israeli human rights organizations, including Hamoked and Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI). The ruling declared torture absolutely prohibited, banning specifically the use of certain methods, including shaking, which had been used over the years and had led to at least two deaths in interrogation. At the same time, the ruling deemed that state officials using violence may be exempt from prosecution in cases of “necessity”. The ruling in this landmark case recognized that while combatting and defending against terror is a necessity and integral to Israeli security, certain moral absolutes still hold, and that the law will still regulate the power of the State.
The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) works on behalf of Israelis, Palestinians, labor migrants and other foreign nationals residing in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories – to protect them from torture and ill-treatment at the hands of Israeli law enforcement and investigatory authorities. PCATI is guided by moral and democratic values and operates in accordance with both Israeli and international law.
Learn the history of the occupation so that we can overcome it, because #50isEnough.
The occupation has gone on for 50 years. It’s a problem that must be addressed for Israel’s sake and for the Palestinians. Over 5 decades and in every month of the year, Israelis, Palestinians, Americans and others have made their mark on reality. Telling these stories is part of how our movement grows stronger. This series marks the watershed moments we all need to know about.