Israeli PTSD sufferer arbitrarily arrested in Dubai
In a case reminiscent of the arrest of Steven Long last March, an Israeli citizen who has been diagnosed with PTSD was detained at Dubai Airport last week over claims of disturbing the peace.
Nachman Gabai, 21, was on his way from Tel Aviv to India when he had an 8-hour layover in Dubai. Gabai and another Israeli were standing outside the terminal building when a police patrol approached to question them. Gabai became agitated, at which point the police ordered him to submit to a strip search and luggage inspection. When nothing unlawful was found, Gabai allegedly became insulting towards the police, and was taken into custody.
“Unlike the case of Steven Long, who suffered a mental health breakdown at Abu Dhabi airport which led to his arrest last Spring,” Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai explained, “Nachman Gabai wasn’t disturbing anyone. He was targeted by the police for no apparent reason, unfairly subjected to a humiliating strip search, and provoked. Even for someone who does not suffer from PTSD, this sort of treatment would be angering. Nachman committed no crime except to protest his harassment by the police.”
In the case of Steven Long, the British bomb disposal expert had suffered a paranoid meltdown causing him to believe the plane he was about to board was carrying an explosive. Long was arrested and sentenced to pay £104,000 or serve 13 years in jail. Gabai has been remanded to custody pending trial, and could face a similar sentence when convicted.