RAMALLAH: The daily conditions of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, imprisoned in Israeli jails, are deteriorating, the minister of prisoners’ affairs in the Palestinian unity government warned on Saturday.
Shawqi al-Eyassah, told Xinhua in an interview that the conditions of the prisoners, mainly those who have been going on a hunger strike since April 23, are deteriorating, adding that the number of the prisoners who were taken to hospitals increased noticeably. “Up to 100 prisoners have been taken to Israeli hospitals after their health conditions deteriorated,” said the minister.
He accused Israel of turning its back on the Palestinian and international calls to release those prisoners, who have been imprisoned under administration detention, adding that the unity government was holding intensive contacts with countries that are members in the Geneva Fourth Convention to interfere. The official said that the prisoners’ issue was on the top priority for both the Palestinian leadership and the Palestinian people, warning that the deterioration of the prisoners’ conditions may lead to the death of some prisoners.
Since April 23, Palestinian factions, political powers, rights groups and families of the prisoners have been organizing daily rallies all over the Palestinian territories in support for the prisoners, who have been going on a hunger strike.
The Palestinians have long been demanding the Israeli government to end once for all the law of administrative detention, used mainly to imprison Palestinian political prisoners who are not involved in violent crimes.
Last year, several administrative prisoners managed to oblige the Israeli prisons’ services to free them after they went on a long hunger strike of three months.
There has been no immediate comment from the Israeli prisons’ services to the ongoing situation of the prisoners who are going on a hunger strike. However, Israeli media quoted officials in the Israeli prisons as saying that 65 prisoners were taken to hospitals. Al-Eyassah warned that all options are open to Palestine in order to defend the Palestinian prisoners’ rights, adding that the international treaties, mainly Geneva Conventions, enable Palestine to complain against Israel in international community. So far, around 5,000 Palestinian prisoners are detained in Israeli prisoners, among whom, 200 prisoners are under administrative detention without a trial.
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