Pictures: Burying the body of Martyr Abdel Muhsen Hassouneh in Jerusalem after detaining it for 236 days
September 7, 2016

The body of Martyr Abdel Muhsen Hassouneh was buried in Al-Mujahedeen Cemetery in Jerusalem after it was detained for 236 days. Tight Israeli procedures and restrictions were imposed during the releasing and burial procedures.

During the funeral, only 23 people from the Martyr’s family were able to participate amid heavy presence of occupation Special Forces, intelligence personnel and Israeli police officers who surrounded the cemetery and closed the streets leading to it (Salah Eddin Street, Sultan Suleiman Street and Herod’s Gate). They established checkpoints and turned the area into a military camp and also moved people away from the cemetery. The forces also moved journalists and obstructed their work to prevent them from documenting the releasing process.

Nadia Hassouneh, Martyr’s mother, explained that the family received their son’s body near the gate of Al-Mujahedeen Cemetery under tight Israeli restrictions. She explained that she had brought a flowers crown with her written on it “Martyr Abdel Muhsen Hassouneh” and the forces made them remove the word “Martyr”.

She pointed out that the authorities delayed issuing her a permit to enter Jerusalem and she waited nearly 4 hours on Wednesday until she received the permit; note that she had submitted the permit request two days prior to Wednesday. It is noteworthy that his mother and several other family members hold a West Bank ID.

His mother said: “Detaining the body for a long time changes the features but her son’s body was in a good condition. It was kind of frozen but we were able to kiss and hug him…his face was bright and he had a smile on”.

Shaher Hassouneh, Martyr’s father, said: “Since the beginning of the year, we signed an agreement with the Israeli intelligence to agreed to bury him in the family’s cemetery in the city of Hebron but the occupation authorities delayed the execution of the agreement until we received the body today and buried it in Jerusalem…This is what my son wanted.”

Martyr Hassouneh passed away on 14/12/2015 after carrying out a run-over attack against Israelis in West Jerusalem. 

On the other hand, lawyer Mohammad Mahmoud explained that Martyr Abdel Muhsen Hassouneh was the last Jerusalemite Martyr whose body was detained for a long time and included in the appeal submitted to the Israeli Supreme Court while the body of Martyr Abdel Hamid Sroor from the city of Bethlehem remains detained and we hope it will be released in the next few days.

Lawyer Mahmoud pointed out that he had submitted an appeal to the Israeli Supreme Court requesting to set a date to release the bodies of 7 Martyrs to their families. During the last few weeks, 6 Martyrs’ bodies have been released (all from Jerusalem) while the occupation authorities continue to detain the body of Martyr Abu Sroor. He added that the Israeli police conditioned the families of Jerusalemite Martyrs to bury their sons in Al-Mujahedeen Cemetery in the presence of only 20-25 family members, and prevented them from taking pictures or filming the releasing process; families had to deposit 20 thousand NIS to ensure commitment to the rules.

The occupation authorities continue to detain the bodies of 11 Palestinian Martyrs that passed away during the most recent popular uprising. Among them are five Martyrs are from Hebron, they are: Sara Tarayra, Majd Khdour, Mohammad Tarayra, Mustafa Barad’yeh and Mohammad Faqeeh. Wael Abu Saleh and Ansar Harsheh from Tulkarem, Abdel Hameed Sroor from Bethlehem, Rami Awartani from Nablus, Sari Abu Ghurab from Jenin and Martyr Mustafa Nimer who passed away last Monday morning.