The news that the US and the Palestinian Authority are planning for CIA Director Gina Haspell to visit Ramallah comes just as Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a report which accuses Hamas and the PA of torture. Titled “Two Authorities, One Way, Zero Dissent”, is based on a two-year investigation during which 86 cases in Gaza and the occupied West Bank were analysed.
Both Hamas and the PA denied the report’s findings and cited lack of consultation during the preparation of the report. Their rejections of the report, however, differed. The PA’s rejection of the report was disseminated in a conventional manner seeking to convince the public that signing conventions and implementing them are interchangeable. However, the PA has exhibited ample evidence of its overt violence and torture accusations have surfaced prior to the HRW report.
Hamas insisted that its law enforcement facilities are “open to inspection by Palestinian and international human rights organisations.” Gaza’s unique situation and vulnerability can indeed provide a haven for torture to flourish – dissent in Gaza will be viewed differently from dissent in the occupied West Bank and the imbalanced power play between Hamas and the PA will continue to reap victims. Read more.