Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh says a number of people have been called in for questioning over the death of a 21-year-old woman under suspicious circumstances, in a case that sparked widespread anger in the occupied West Bank.
Though the exact circumstances surrounding Israa Ghrayeb’s death last month remain unknown, rights activists have alleged she died after being beaten by family members in a so-called honor killing an accusation the family rejects.
A number of people have been arrested for interrogation, Shtayyeh told a cabinet meeting on Monday, without providing further details.
He promised to reveal in due course the results of a forensic examination and of an ongoing investigation into the case.
Scores of people on Monday amassed by Shtayyeh’s office in Ramallah, demanding justice for Ghrayeb and calling on the Palestinian Authority to amend laws to tackle domestic violence.
In response, Minister of Women’s Affairs Amal Hamad said the government would soon take steps to establish a comprehensive system for the protection of women, according to local media.
Ghrayeb was reportedly killed on August 22, just days after she was discharged from a hospital in her hometown of Beit Sahour near Bethlehem where she had been admitted for a spinal injury about two weeks prior, according to local media reports.
Citing a close friend, the reports said Ghrayeb had sustained the injuries from beatings for allegedly posting a video on social media while out in public with her fiancee. Her family, however, said in a statement she had fallen down in the garden.
After returning home, a family member was quoted by local media as saying she died of a heart attack.
A short video recorded outside of her hospital room during her stay was circulated on social media, where sounds of loud screams in the background were attributed to Ghrayeb, as she was reportedly being beaten by family members.
An autopsy report was ordered by the Bethlehem district prosecutor, but the results are yet to be announced.
Source: Palestine Chronicle