Israel: Sixth Prison Term for Conscientious Objector Ajuad Zidan
(04.03.2011) We have learned that conscientious objector Ajuad Zidan was sentenced to 30 days of imprisonment on 27 Feb. for his refusal to enlist. This is now his sixth (!) term in prison. Since our previous update on his case he hass been going in and out of prison repeatedly, sentenced again and again for his refusal to join the military, and persisting in his refusal. By the time his current term ends, he will have spent a total of more than four months behind bars, with no end in sight.
Throughout this period, Ajuad has repeatedly appealed to receive a hearing from the so-called "Conscience Committee" - an internal military panel that is the only body reviewing appeals for exemption by conscientious objectors in Israel. However, his requests to appear before this committee were flatly ignored.
Ajuad Zidan is due to be released from prison on 25 March, and is likely to be imprisoned again afterwards. Please send Ajuad Zidan letters of support to the prison address:
Ajuad Zidan, Military ID 5810026, Military Prison No. 6, Military Postal Code 01860, IDF, Israel, Fax: ++972-4-9540580
Since the prison authorities often block mail from reaching imprisoned objectors, we also recommend you to send them your letters of support and encouragement via e-mail to: messages2prison(at)newprofile.org, and they will be printed out and delivered during visits.
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We also recommend to send letters of protest on the objectors’ behalf, preferably by fax, to:
Mr. Ehud Barak, Minister of Defence, Ministry of Defence, Hakirya, Tel-Aviv 64743, Israel. eMail: sar(at)mod.gov.il" target="_blank or pniot(at)mod.gov.il" target="_blank, Fax: ++972-3-6976711
For those of you who live outside Israel, it would be very effective to send protests to your local Israeli embassy. You can find the address of your local embassy on the web.
Here is a generic sample letter,
which you can use in sending appeals to authorities on the prisoners’ behalf. Feel free to modify this letter or write your own:
It has come to my attention that Ajuad Zidan from the town of Beit Jann (military ID 5810026), a conscientious objector to military service, has been imprisoned for the sixth time in a row for his refusal to become part of the Israeli army, and is held in Military Prison no. 6 near Atlit.
The imprisonment of conscientious objectors such as Ajuad Zidan is a violation of international law, of basic human rights and of plain morals. This is especially clear in cases, such as Zidan’s, in which conscientious objectors are being sentenced repeatedly for their self-same decision to refuse enlistment.
I therefore call for the immediate and unconditional release from prison of Ajuad Zidan, without threat of further imprisonment in the future, and urge you and the system you are heading to respect the dignity and person of conscientious objectors, indeed of all persons, in the future.
Thank you for your attention and action,
Sergeiy Sandler – New Profile
New Profile: Sixth Prison Term for Conscientious Objector Ajuad Zidan. March 4, 2011