Amnesty UK AGM Passes motion by Lewes Amnesty in Support of Mohamed El Halbi

Palestinian activist Mohamed El Halabi

Adrian Briggs of our group attended the AIUK AGM on the 25th of June and proposed Lewes Amnesty’s motion that Palestinian activist Mohamed El Halabi be considered for Prisoner of Conscience status by Amnesty International.

The motion, authored by Adrian and Duncan Taylor, had the support of Amnesty’s Board and “fairly sailed through” the committee stage. It passed by 1069 votes to 53, with no one speaking against.

Mohammed El Halabi was imprisoned without charge in 2016. His case was delayed for years in pre-trial formalities. The court only gave a verdict after Israel’s Supreme Court gave them a deadline to return a verdict. The court then found him guilty on 15 June 2022, refusing to make any evidence public. 

The Motion and Background Information

We request to Amnesty International UK and the International Secretariat that Mohammed El Halabi’s case be escalated as a priority by the IPOT research team, so that he can be designated formally as an Amnesty Prisoner of Conscience. 

For many years, Mohammed El Halabi worked for World Vision, an international aid organisation in Gaza. He was arrested by Israel in July 2016. The charges could not have been more serious: transferring 7.2 million US dollars a year from World Vision to Hamas. This despite the fact that World Vision’s entire budget for Gaza over this time was a fraction of this amount, and even though two independent audits concluded that no money was missing.  Mohammed has been imprisoned by Israel without trial for more than 6 years. There have been 160 court dates. He has been separated from his family and lost his freedom. Mohammed’s imprisonment clearly has nothing to do with embezzlement, and everything to do with an attempt to discredit NGOs and aid agencies working in Palestine, by trying to link them to allegedly terrorist groups.