The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns crimes of harassment and intimidation committed by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) during nightly house raids in the West Bank, during which allegedly wanted Palestinians are arrested or summoned for interrogation by the Israeli General Security Service (Shabak). The house raids in the period between 9 and 15 February 2012, numbering 72 in total, resulted in the miscarriage of the wife of a former prisoner in Israeli jails in Salem village, east of Nablus.

According to PCHR investigations and the woman’s testimony, at approximately 02:00 on Saturday, 11 February 2012, IOF moved into Salem village, east of Nablus. They raided a house belonging to the family of Nassim Helmi Karkari, 40, a former prisoner in Israeli jails who was released in the latest prisoner swap between Israel and Palestinian resistance groups.

Karkari’s mother opened the door, and Israeli soldiers entered the house. They ordered her to bring her son. She went to her son’s flat to inform him. Quickly, Karkadi and his wife, Sameera Fu’ad Eshtayeh, 37, who was pregnant in the second month, came down from their flat on the second floor. The soldiers requested Karkari’s ID card, and ordered his wife to bring it.

She mounted up very fast on the stairs. While she was descending on the stairs, she tripped and fell down. She then gave the ID card to Israeli soldiers, who verified it and delivered Karkari a notice to refer to the Shabak in Huwara military camp on 13 February 2012.

A few hours after IOF had left the house, the wife suffered from severe pains in the abdomen and the back. She immediately went to her gynecologist, Hanan Aadel, in Nablus. The gynecologist asked Eshtayeh for an ultrasound scan, and when she checked the scan, she told her that the fetus had no pulses. Eshtayeh was transferred to Rafidya Hospital, where she was aborted.

PCHR emphasizes that IOF practice systematic intimidation and harassment against Palestinian civilians during nightly house raids, and:

1. Strongly condemns the intimidation of Nassim Karkari’s family, which caused his wife’s miscarriage;

2. Stresses that intimation and harassment of civilians constitute a form of torture and cruel and inhuman treatment; and

3. Reiterates its call for the international community to immediately act to stop Israel’s systematic and serious human rights violations against Palestinian civilians.