The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) yesterday slammed the Israeli High Court’s approval of the use of controversial methods to interrogate Palestinians deemed as “ticking bombs,” saying the ruling was interpreted by the Shin Bet as a green light to torture almost every Palestinian detainee.

The report, entitled “A Time Bomb”, describes nine cases of Palestinian prisoners being tortured in the past year.

According to the report, the Israeli High Court of Justice’s ruling on the interrogation of suspects defined as “time bombs” allows for “almost any Palestinian prisoner to be tortured,” Israel Radio reported.

The report also alleged that prison wardens, policemen and even doctors take part in torture, as well as lawyers, military judges and senior officials in the Justice Ministry.

“It is entirely possible that the practice of torture is an effective measure for obtaining information that may save human life (the Public Committee Against Torture opposes torture absolutely, regardless of such claims), but the testimonies of the nine terror victims exemplify the extent to which the torture mechanism is rooted in the treatment of Palestinian detainees, and the exceedingly bureaucratic way in which torture is carried out, in an organized, almost blasé manner,” the report said.

“We have no way of knowing what information was in the possession of the Israeli security apparatuses that led to the use of such sadistic torture, but it is doubtful that any of the victims fits the very terrible scenario of a ‘ticking bomb’.”

PCATI said in the report that it is no longer possible to limit the practice of torture to exceptional cases.


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