Affidavit No. 6000/2011

Sworn Statement

After having been warned to tell the truth and nothing but the truth or else I shall be subjected to penal action, I, the undersigned, Ghassan Khalil Ibrahim Abu-al-Nasr, of Palestinian nationality, holder of ID No. 931527915, born on 02 May 1982, a National Authority employee in Ramallah, and a resident of Beit Lahiya Project, North Gaza Governorate, would like to declare the following:

On Saturday 1 January 2011, around 7:30 pm, I was standing at the doorstep outside my house, which is located in Beit Lahiya Project near Kamal ‘Udwan Hospital. I was watching fireworks go off above my friend and neighbor Shadi Diyab’s house in celebration of the Fateh Movement’s 47th launching anniversary. This happened despite the fact that the deposed (Hamas) government of Gaza had forbidden any form of celebration on this occasion. A police force arrived to Shadi’s house and a large crowd of people gathered around. It became clear that the police had the intention of arresting my friend Shadi. I headed there to make sure that Shadi was fine; it was then that I saw the police escorting him from his home into a police car. Just as I was asking one of the people why he was being arrested, the head of the police force, a lieutenant called Ramzi Younes, heard me and said “get away…get away from here” in a very provocative tone. I started heading towards my house without responding to the lieutenant but he followed me. The lieutenant happened to be a resident of our area and he knew me well. He also knew that I was friends with Shadi. He ordered me to leave once again and I responded by saying that I was standing by my doorstep. He then punched me in the face with both hands. I defended myself by stopping the blows to my face but then more policemen arrived and beat me with their rifle butts. They then grabbed me, put me in the police car with Shadi and drove off quickly.

We arrived to a dark area in al-Barawi Street in Beit Lahiya, where they forcibly took us out of the police car and started beating our feet and shoulders with batons and their rifle butts. Police officer Ramzi Younes and the rest of the police force beat us for about fifteen minutes nonstop. A group of people gathered at the site after they heard our screams. As soon as people gathered, they put us back in the police car and drove off.

We were taken to Beit Lahiya Police Station where officer Rami and the other policemen immediately started beating us, in the same manner as earlier, for about another fifteen minutes. I felt excruciating pain in my right knee and left shoulder as the police officers mostly beat my joints. As a result of the beatings, Shadi and I were incapable of standing up or walking. They then dragged us into the police station while continuing to beat us in the same manner. When the policemen on duty and another officer, Abu-Ibrahim Darabi, arrived at the police station, they started beating us with their batons as well on all parts of our bodies. We were then transferred to al-Nathara Jail inside the station and I was unable to move due to the beatings I had recieved. They kept us there for about an hour during which I had asked them several times to send me to a hospital for treatment, but they refused. This refusal came despite my apparently serious injuries as well as our constant begging for them to transfer me to a hospital.

Finally, the deputy director of the Police Station, Major ‘Abd-al-Karim al-Ashqar, arrived and inspected my injuries. After doing so, he ordered the policemen on duty to transfer me to a hospital, but they refused to comply as they were following Lieutenant Ramzi Younes’ instructions. At approximately 1:30 am lieutenant Ramzi Younes –who was the leader of the police squad responsible for our arrest– arrived, accompanied by another officer with the rank of a Major. Lieutenant Younes ordered me to stand up, so I responded by saying “I can neither move nor get up because of the beatings I have received from you and the rest of the policemen in your squad.” He then pointed at me and told the Major “This is the guy who wants to celebrate Fateh’s launching anniversary”. Lieutenant Younes then said “You Fateh followers think that the 50 day police campaign titled “Dignified Citizen, Patient Policeman” is still in effect and that we will be lenient with you… From now on there is a new campaign called “A Worthless Citizen and a Bully Policeman Beating the Citizen on the Head with a Shoe”. If you think you have been beaten then you are wrong… The I wouldn’t call the beating you received already, beating…I will show you what beating means in the morning…”.

After this, an Israeli shelling with F-16 aircrafts took place near the police station. The policemen and officers evacuated the station leaving us behind and would only return about 45 minutes later. When they came back, I asked them for painkillers, but they refused once again and left me in pain. It later turned out that Israeli jets had targeted a nearby al-Qassam Brigades center. I was left lying on the ground in severe pain that I felt in my right knee and left shoulder until morning prayers when I lost consciousness. I regained conciseness at 7:20 am and found myself at Kamal ‘Udwan Hospital. I was in the radiation department and noticed a cast on my right leg. The doctor on duty explained to me that some policemen had brought me in and claimed that I had fallen out of a police car. I told the doctor the truth of how I was actually beaten by the policemen themselves. The doctor informed me that medical examination revealed three fractures in my right knee cap and a sprain to my left shoulder as well as bruises throughout my whole body especially on my joints.

Later, some policemen arrived to the hospital and –despite my injuries and the cast on my leg– took me to Beit Lahiya Police Station once again, and back to al-Nathara jail where Shadi was. After about an hour, the General Inspector from the Ministry of Interior in North Gaza, Abu-al-Sa’id al-Kurd, came to check on me in prison and was deeply disturbed by my condition. He left the jail and thirty minutes later I was transferred to Balsam Military Hospital in Beit Hanoun by ambulance. There I underwent medical checks and was then taken home by ambulance where I am trying to recover from my injuries. I still suffer from severe pain in various parts of my body due to the intensity of the beating I had been subject to. I still cannot move normally and need crutches to walk.

Affidavit Details

  • Affidavit Number: 6000/2011
  • Field researcher: Mohammad Abu Rahmah
  • Affidavit Date: 05 January 2011
  • Name: Ghassan Khalil Ibrahim Abu-al-Nasr
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