At approximately 10am on Saturday 19 February 2011, the police in Gaza summoned Ramzi Qeshta, owner of Beauty Center; Hatem Al Ghoul, owner of Hatem Coiffeur; Adnan Brakat, owner of Barakat Coiffeur; and Mohammed Al Biltaji, owner of Fair Lady Shop.
The police sent them summonses to present themselves at the Al Abbas police station immediately.
When they went to the station, a police officer told them that the Ministry of Interior had issued a decision that banned them from handling women’s hair.
He also told them that they had to sign a declaration committing them not to breach the decision.
In his affidavit to Al Mezan, Ramzi Qeshta said that he asked the police officer what would happen if they did not sign the declaration.
The officer told him that if they would sign the declaration, they would go home; however, if they did not they would be detained.
Ramzi added that they were therefore forced to sign the document.
The document included a typewritten sentence that read ‘commit themselves not to disrupt public order and morals’.
There was also a handwritten sentence that bans them from entering their shops and run them and, if they failed to do so, the declaration states, they would have pay a fine of NIS 20,000 (approximately USD 4,000).
After signing the declaration, Ramzi asked the officer if there was any law that prevents them from working in their shops and the officer said no, but a new law would be passed soon.