George Canawati

George Canawati

Location: Bethlehem, Palestinian Territory
31° 42' 20.7036" N, 35° 12' 9.5796" E
Status: Threatened
Arrested between 08 Sep 2011 and 12 Sep 2011

According to IFEX: "Radio Bethlehem 2000 director George Canawati published a note critical of Bethlehem's Health Directorate on his Facebook page and criticised the presence of Israeli products on the table at a department managers' meeting on 8 September 2011. After the publication the governor summoned him to his office. Canawati obliged and met with the governor and other health department staff, where he faced questions over his reasons for writing the note. The governor then requested that Canawati delete the note from his site, to which he responded that the note was not a personal attack, but was written to highlight the indifference and neglect in the Health Directorate and to encourage department staff to instigate change.

On 15 September 2011, The Magistrate Court of Bethlehem issued the decision to release George Canawati on bail, with the provision that he appear again before the court on 3 October 2011, following charges of libel and slander filed by Bethlehem's Governor Abelfatah Hamayel.

According the The Guardian, "George Canawati was held [for 5 days] in an office at the city's general intelligence service headquarters over the Muslim holiday of Eid last month, according to an account he has given to the Guardian. He was provided with a mattress to sleep on, and food, but was given no explanation for his continued detention beyond an initial three-hour interrogation."

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