Avraham Dichter, former head of the Israeli Security Agency – the Shin Bet/ Shabak, a body known, among other things, to be regularly using torture during interrogations of Palestinian detainees and prisoners, and for threatening Palestinian political activists, faced hard criticism on Monday from the Members of the European Parliament.
Portuguese MEP Ana Gomes, from the S&D group at the European Parliament exposed Dichter’s criminal record saying that:
“Mr Dichter is the mastermind behind the Israeli policy of ‘targeted killings’, in which Israeli forces carried out hundreds of extrajudicial killings in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In addition on July 22nd 2002, he planned and directed an aerial attack dropping a one-ton bomb on a densely-populated residential complex in Gaza City, killing 15 Palestinians, including 8 children, and injuring 150 other civilians. For his role in the repeated attacks of residential Palestinian neighbourhoods he was accused for war crimes by the American Center for Constitutional rights1, and for the prospect of that he faced arrest in the UK for war crimes in 2007. “2
MEP Wajid Khan, from the S&D group at the European Parliament, denounced Israel’s attempts to demolish Palestinian village of Khan al-Ahmar and its constant violations of internal law.
Vice chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs at the European Parliament, MEP Javier Couso Permuy said:
“Im not going to ask you any questions, because any questions I would have to a war criminal would be those from a prosecutor (…) Mr Dichter is alleged war criminal who ordered torture of Palestinian detainees and extra-judicial killings”.
He emphasised the fact that Mr Dichter was the first lawmaker to initiate the racist ‘nation state’ bill, which was later on adapted by Netanyahu and recently passed as a law that officially turns the Palestinian citizens of Israel into a second-class citizens, demoting the formal status of the Arabic language and promoting racial segregation in housing.
MEP Permuy called for the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement, until Israel respects international law and human rights and left the meeting in a protest.