The Independent Human Rights Commission claims that Farid al-Atrash was arrested at an Israeli checkpoint east of Jerusalem.
A Palestinian human rights lawyer was arrested by Israeli forces after participating in a protest in the occupied West Bank against Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, his rights group said.
The Independent Human Rights Commission (ICHR) said in a statement that Farid al-Atrash was arrested Sunday morning at an Israeli checkpoint east of Jerusalem as he returned from a protest against the ‘Palestinian Authority (PA) in Ramallah, where the PA is based. .
He said al-Atrash had been transferred to Israeli Hadassah Hospital and called for his immediate release from Israeli custody.
According to the commission, al-Atrash was on his way to Bethlehem from Ramallah when the arrest took place.
Issa Amro, a prominent Palestinian activist and friend of al-Atrash, said he was released from hospital hours later and was still being questioned by Israeli authorities. It is not known why he was admitted to the hospital.
Neither the IDF nor the police made immediate comment.
Amro and al-Atrash have both been arrested by Israel in the past for organizing and participating in protests against its military occupation of the West Bank.
But Amro said al-Atrash had recently focused his efforts on protesting the Palestinian Authority on Nizar Banat, an activist who died shortly after being violently arrested by Palestinian security forces last month.
The Israeli army has arrested human rights defender Farid Al Atrash, he has not been politically active against the occupation lately. he was active against the assassination of opposition activist Nizar Bannat by the Palestinian Authority. pic.twitter.com/d3mq1XKFAe
– Issa Amro (@Issaamro) July 4, 2021
He said another human rights lawyer, Mohannad Karajah, who defends protesters arrested by the Palestinian Authority, was briefly detained by Palestinian authorities on Sunday.
Amro himself was arrested by the Palestinian Authority last month and detained overnight, days before Banat died in custody. The Palestinian Authority does not publicly comment on the arrests.
Israel and the Palestinian Authority coordinate security in the West Bank in order to suppress the Palestinian group, Hamas, and other groups that both see as a threat.
This policy is deeply unpopular among Palestinians and is one of many long-standing grievances fueling recent protests.
Thousands of Palestinians have joined demonstrations in recent weeks against the Palestinian Authority, which rules parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
The Palestinian Authority has become increasingly unpopular and dictatorial in recent years, even as Western countries continue to view it as a key partner in the dying peace process.
This arrest comes amid a violent crackdown on Palestinians by Israeli forces, including arbitrary arrests and the targeting of protests and rallies against discriminatory Israeli policies and the establishment of illegal Israeli settlements.