Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Ahrar center: Israel uses many torture means against Palestinian prisoners

GAZA, (PIC)-- Al-Ahrar center for human rights and prisoners’ studies stated Tuesday that Israel uses internationally-prohibited means during the detention of Palestinians much more than tying hands of prisoners behind their backs as admitted by the Shin Bet lately.

Director of the center Fouad Al-Khafsh cited as an example that Israeli officers do not confine to tying the hands of Palestinian prisoners during interrogation, but they also severely beat them, deprive them from sleep and douse them with cold water.

Khafsh added that the Israeli allegations that tying the hands of prisoners behind their backs is something necessary to prevent prisoners from escaping or attacking interrogators is a flimsy pretext because everyone entering Israeli jails knows well the security fortifications and measures in such places.

The center director noted that these Israeli claims came after an Israeli organization submitted a complaint against the way of tying Palestinian detainees during interrogation.

He called on all organizations concerned with human and prisoners’ rights to file complaints with international institutions about Israel’s violations against Palestinians’ rights in its jails.

In another context, the Palestinian ministry of health in the Gaza Strip strongly denounced Israel for kidnapping a Palestinian patient called Ahmed Asfour as he was on his way to a hospital in occupied Jerusalem to receive medical treatment from injuries he sustained during an Israeli missile attack on the town of Abassan in January 2009.

In a press release, the ministry said that Asfour obtained approval to pursue his medical treatment in the French hospital in Jerusalem after his family coordinated his transfer to the hospital, but during his attempt along with his father to cross Beit Hanoun checkpoint last Wednesday, Israeli soldiers maltreated them, forced them to undress and confiscated their IDs, medical documents and medicines, before rounding him up.

It appealed to human rights organizations to intervene to get the patient released immediately from Israeli jails.

For his part, specialist in prisoners’ affairs Abdelnasser Farawana stated Tuesday that Israel’s insistence on not releasing hundreds of old prisoners and its evasion of its responsibilities towards the settlement process are the main reasons that prompted the Palestinian resistance to stick to its demands regarding the prisoner swap deal.

In a statement, Farawana opined that Israel’s insistence on excluding old prisoners from any deal, maltreating them and not providing them with basic needs, which led to the deterioration of their health conditions, made the captors of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit demand their release because there is no other way to free them after the failure of the settlement process to do so.

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