IPU Logo-middleInter-Parliamentary Union  
IPU Logo-bottomChemin du Pommier 5, C.P. 330, CH-1218 Le Grand-Saconnex/Geneva, Switzerland  


Resolution adopted unanimously by the IPU Governing Council at its 185th session
(Geneva, 21 October 2009)

The Governing Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the case of Dr. Abdel Aziz Dweik, Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), as outlined in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/185/11(b)-R.1), and to the resolution adopted at its 184th session (April 2009); referring also to its report on the case PAL/16-PAL/51 and to the resolution adopted by the Governing Council at its 184th session on that case,

Recalling the following:Dr. Dweik, Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council, was elected in January 2006 on the Change and Reform (Hamas) list; he was arrested during the night of 5 to 6 August 2006 by the Israeli Defence Forces and later charged with membership in a terrorist organization, namely Hamas, and leadership in that organization by way of membership in the PLC and by way of assuming the role of Speaker in the PLC; on 16 December 2008, the judge handed down her verdict, finding him guilty of membership of an unauthorized organization and leadership by way of membership of the PLC on behalf of that organization and, on account of his poor health, sentenced him to 36 months’ imprisonment, the release date being set for 17 June 2009; the prosecution appealed against the sentence on the grounds that the sentence was too lenient and that Dr. Dweik had not been convicted for leadership in an unauthorized organization by way of assuming the role of PLC Speaker,

Considering that at the appeal hearing of 1 June, at which an IPU trial observer was present, the court rejected the defence counsel’s application for recusal of the presiding judge, the defence counsel then announced that he would appeal against that decision in the Supreme Court, and the prosecution made an application for Dr. Dweik to be detained beyond the conclusion of his sentence pending a ruling on the defence appeal against the court’s refusal to recuse the presiding judge and pending determination of its own sentence appeal; the hearing was adjourned with no date being set for hearing the prosecution application for Dr. Dweik’s continued incarceration; noting that a hearing was subsequently set for 7 June 2009 and that Dr. Dweik’s lawyer decided not to appeal against the courts refusal to recuse the presiding judge; that, according to widespread media coverage, on 17 June the court decided to reject the prosecution appeal and not to entertain the prosecution’s application to increase his sentence from 36 to 42 months; that Dr. Dweik was released on 23 June 2009,

  1. Notes with satisfaction the ruling of the court on the prosecution’s appeal and welcomes Dr. Dweik’s release; nevertheless deeply regrets his arrest, detention and prosecution on purely political grounds as spelled out in the resolution it adopted in April 2009;

  2. Decides to close this case.
Note: you can download a complete electronic version of the brochure "Results of the 121st IPU Assembly and related meetings" in PDF format (file size 583K approximately). This version requires Adobe Acrobat Reader, which you can download free of charge.Get Acrobat Reader