Report: Israel detained 250 Palestinian citizens since the beginning of 2021

Days of Palestine - Jerusalem

Israeli occupation forces have arrested 250 Palestinian citizens in various regions since the beginning of the new year 2021, according to a report issued by the Palestine Center for Prisoner Studies.

Riad Al-Ashqar, the director of the center, said that the year 2021 will not be better than the previous as the arrests escalated greatly during the first two weeks, in addition to the increase in the number of prisoners infected with the coronavirus.

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Al-Ashqar explained that the arrests have become a drain on the Palestinian people, and one of the tools of oppression that the Israeli occupation uses to fight them as all segments of Palestinian society are affected so that no hour passes until the Israeli occupation carries out an arrest operation for one or more citizens.

Al-Ashqar pointed out that the Israeli occupation arrested 30 minors under the age of eighteen, the youngest of whom was the child Yusef Alaa al-Haddad (11 years), from the Old City of occupied Jerusalem, and the two children, Ammar Mahmoud Thawabta (15 years), from the town of Beit Fajar in Bethlehem, and Diaa Muhammad Ubaid ( 15 years old), from Issawiya, Jerusalem.

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Meanwhile, the Israeli occupation forces arrested the wounded Muhyiddin Ghaith, 18, at the "60" military checkpoint, south of Hebron, after he was shot and wounded while he was near the Ibrahimi Mosque.

Al-Ashqar added that the Israeli occupation arrested the lawyer Suhail al-Husseini (59 years), and his son, the lawyer Fahd, after storming their house in the Jabal Jawhar area in Hebron. 

They also arrested Sheikh Saeed Abdul Aziz Arma (52 years), after raiding his house in the city of Ramallah, following the spread of his picture on social media, holding a slingshot and throwing stones at the Israeli occupation soldiers, in defense of the lands of his village, which the Israeli occupation seeks to steal and confiscate.

The Center also monitored one case of arrest in the Gaza Strip since the beginning of this year for a young man while trying to "infiltrate" from the northern Gaza Strip into the occupied territories, and he was released after being detained for hours and interrogated.

Al-Ashqar indicated that the most prominent event during the new year is the large spread of the coronavirus among the prisoners, and the increase in the number of infected prisoners from 140 at the end of last year to 236, and this number is expected to increase as a result of the presence of dozens of prisoners who had contracted the virus between the others whose samples were taken from them and the results of their examination did not appear yet.

In addition that the Israeli occupation is manipulating the real numbers of infected prisoners because it is the only source of information about the conditions and numbers of prisoners who were injured in isolation in special departments.

The state of tension and anxiety still hangs over all prisons after the huge increase in the number of infected and the transfer of disease from one prison to another, especially after the deterioration of the health of prisoner Basil Makhlouf from Tulkarm as a result of his infection with coronavirus and his entry into the stage of danger and his transfer to the intensive care in Soroka Hospital.

The Israeli occupation continues delaying the approval of giving prisoners the coronavirus vaccine.

Al-Ashqar indicated that during the past two weeks, the health of many prisoners had deteriorated and reached a dangerous stage due to the continuing policy of medical negligence against them by the Israeli prisons' authorities. 

The report said that the prisoner "Hussein Masalma" (37 years) from Bethlehem, who was found to have leukemia as a result of stalling the occupation in following up on his case, where he has been suffering for several months from severe abdominal pain. Masalma has been detained since 2002, and the Israeli occupation refuses to release him even though he has only several months left of his 20-year sentence.

It was also confirmed that the prisoner, Gamal Amr, from Hebron, had cancerous tumors in the liver and kidneys, and cancer began to crawl to other places in his body and his health condition is very serious.

The Israeli occupation also continued the repression and abuse of prisoners by attacking the sections with heavily armed special units, destroying their private belongings, and confiscating many of them; The most dangerous of which was in Ofer prison where a number of prisoners suffocated as a result of gas spraying on them during incursions into sections (16, 22, 21), in addition to the withdrawal of all electrical appliances from the prisoners ’sections, which led them to protest the return of meals.

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