PCHR condemns Gaza death sentences
The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) on Sunday condemned the death sentences recently passed by Hamas, the de facto power in Gaza, against five Palestinians in Gaza without the approval of President Mahmoud Abbas as a violation of Palestinian law and the international obligations of the State of Palestine.
The center stressed in a press statement that justice cannot be achieved by bypassing laws, “Despite the relevance of prosecuting killers and bringing them to justice, the rule of law is above all considerations, and the implementation of unlawful death sentences undermines the values of justice.”
PCHR reported that the President’s approval of death sentences is a prerequisite to their implementation as stipulated by relevant laws, including the Penal Procedure Law of 2001 and the Palestinian amended Basic Law of 2003, which unequivocally provided that this punishment may not be carried out without approval as affirmed in article 109 of Palestine’s amended law which emphasized that the death penalty issued by any court shall not be carried out unless it is ratified by the President of the Palestinian National Authority.
It is noteworthy that this year has seen a rise in the issuance of death sentences in the Gaza Strip, where so far it reached 17 new death sentences, including three issued by military courts, and five that aggravate previous rulings by the Court of Appeal, all of which are in the Gaza Strip.