Palestinian National Authority

The Palestinian Authority performs public executions. Current laws allow the death penalty for murder, rape, collaborating with Israeli forces.There are a total of 17 offenses in the West Bank and 15 in the Gaza Strip for which the death penalty can be imposed under the Palestinian Penal Code. There had been an unofficial moratorium since 2002 after President Yasser Arafat stopped authorising executions. The Hamas Islamic court has sentenced people to death for murder.

EU Blasts Palestinian Use Of Death Penalty

European Union missions based in Jerusalem and Ramallah in the occupied West Bank condemned Friday a death sentence issued in the Gaza Strip earlier this week.
The sentence was the 5th issued since the beginning of the year by Palestinian courts.
On Monday, the Permanent Military Court in Gaza City – acting as a court of First Instance – sentenced a 37-year-old Palestinian from the al-Daraj neighborhood to death by firing squad after he was convicted of “collaboration with a foreign hostile entity,” the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) reported.
Under Palestinian law, wilful, premeditated murder and treason as well as collaboration with the enemy – usually Israel – are punishable by death.
The EU called on authorities in Gaza – run by the Hamas movement – to refrain from enforcing capital punishment on the grounds that the practice is cruel, inhumane, fails to deter criminal behavior, and denies citizens human dignity.
PCHR said that Monday’s sentence brings the total number of death sentences issued by the Palestinian courts since 1994 to 161, over 80 % of which were carried out in the Gaza Strip.
The remainder took place in the occupied West Bank in courts run by the Palestinian Authority.
The majority of those facing the death penalty in the Gaza Strip have been executed since Hamas took control on 2007, PCHR said, adding that 19 have been executed since 2007 without ratification by President Mahmoud Abbas.
Under Palestinian law, capital punishment may only be carried out with the approval of the Palestinian president.
As the Hamas movement broke from the Palestinian Authority in 2007 and does not recognize the legitimacy of Mahmoud Abbas, Hamas authorities in the Gaza Strip sidestep the president’s consent on cases of capital punishment.
The EU added that the authorities in Gaza must “comply with the moratorium on executions put in place by the Palestinian Authority, pending abolition of the death penalty in line with the global trend.”
While Hamas has controlled the Gaza Strip since 2007 and the Palestinian Authority rules in the occupied West Bank, the death penalty is carried out by both parties in both territories.
Hamas executed 18 men in August for alleged collaboration with Israel during the 50-day Gaza war.
Palestine is 1 of 22 countries that carried out the death penalty last year.
The practice has been abolished in 140 countries – nearly 2/3 of countries around the world – and in 2012 over half of United Nations member states voted for a UN resolution to be passed for a global moratorium on the practice.
In 2014, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United States carried out the largest numbers of recorded death sentences.
Rights groups have criticized Palestinian authorities in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip for implementing capital punishment without due process., August 28, 2015

Gaza City: Hamas Imposes Radical New Law: Lashings, Amputations, and Massive Executions

April 1, 2014

Hamas is now trying to outdo the Taliban in imposing new Shar’ia inspired draconian punishments, including amputations of limbs and massive increases in lashings and executions. A senior Hamas official told Gulf News that a new punitive law, “inspired by” Shar’ia Law, is required to replace the former and “impractical” one. The article states that there will be a minimum of 20 lashes for minor offenses and a minimum of 80 lashes for criminal cases: the death penalty will also be expanded in accordance with the Shar’ia. In addition, the new law includes cutting off the hands of a thief.

By replacing an almost 80-year old punitive law with a new radical one, Hamas has earned widespread condemnation by other Palestinian factions. Even other terrorist groups condemn Hamas’ new law.

“The new law will harm the interests of the Palestinians and perpetuate the Palestinian internal split. Hamas must retreat and show priority and preference to the higher Palestinian interests,” according to The Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) statement.

According to the article, Hamas asserts that the law aims at deterring criminals in Gaza.

Instead of planning to alleviate Gaza’s deteriorating economic situation or reining in terrorist groups operating in the Strip, the Hamas regime is reinforcing its radical rule. Clearly, Hamas prioritizes imposing its radical Islamist agenda on Palestinian society over enhancing Gaza’s standard of living.

It remains to be seen whether Hamas’ front groups and supporters in the United States, including the Council on American-Islamic Relations, American Muslims for Palestine, and the Muslim American Society, who claim to be civil rights organizations, will condemn Hamas for implementing this new law.


GAZA: The EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah Condemn the Death Sentence Issued in Gaza

February 12, 2014

The EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah condemn the death sentence issued by the de facto authorities in Gaza on 6th February.

As in their most recent statement on 10 December, the EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah recall the EU’s firm opposition under all circumstances to the use of capital punishment. The EU considers that abolition of the death penalty contributes to the enhancement of human dignity and the progressive development of human rights.

The EU considers capital punishment to be cruel and inhuman, that it fails to provide deterrence to criminal behaviour, and represents an unacceptable denial of human dignity and integrity.

The EU calls on the de facto authorities in Gaza to refrain from carrying out any executions of prisoners and comply with the moratorium on executions put in place by the Palestinian Authority, pending abolition of the death penalty in line with the global trend.

(source: Palestine News Network)


February 6, 2014: A Gaza military court sentenced a man convicted of collaborating with Israel to death and another to life in prison on the same charge.

The court did not determine a date for his execution. It said the evidence proved the defendant was guilty.

Neither defendant was identified by name.

Hamas has executed nearly two dozen people since taking over Gaza in 2007, according to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, which opposes capital punishment.

(Source: Ma’an)