In women’s month, suffering of Palestinian female prisoners increases

Ramallah (QNN) – On International Women’s Day, Addameer Organization for Prisoners Support and Human Rights published a report stating facts about 48 Palestinian females held in Israeli prisons and detention centers.

According to Addameer, there are currently 48 Palestinian female prisoners, including 24 mothers, 7 injured prisoners, 26 sick prisoners and 1 administrative detainee held without charge or trial. The detained women suffer from long sentences with a maximum of 16 years.

All of those prisoners are held at Damon prison that is located inside the occupied territories, which contradicts the Fourth Geneva Convention that prohibits the transfer of the occupied population to the territory of the occupier.

In its report, Addameer highlights the suffering of the Palestinian female detainees during the arrest itself, during the interrogation period, and in the Israeli prison. Those detainees have been subject to a severe deterioration essential services in prison, including food, water, hygiene, medical care, right to privacy and right to education.

Upon being taken to interrogation and detention centers, female Palestinian detainees are usually held under interrogation for several days and denied their right to know the reason behind their arrest. They are subjected to torture and ill-treatment that cause mental and physical suffering. These include prolonged isolation from the outside world, inhumane detention conditions, excessive use of blindfolds and handcuffs, sleep deprivation, denial of food and water for extended periods, denial of access to toilets, denial of access to showers or change of clothes for days or weeks, being forced into stress positions, yelling, insults and cursing, and sexual harassment, Addameer report mentioned.

The formation of a new committee by the Israeli Minister Gilad Erdan intensified the bad detention conditions and punitive measures imposed on the female Palestinian prisoners at Hasharon prison for women. In September 2018, the Israeli Prison Services operated the surveillance cameras, after being shut off for years following an agreement between the prisoners and the administration in 2011, which further restricted the right to privacy for those female detainees. The imposition of the cameras forced them to stop their sports routine or take off their vials. It actually prevented them from undertaking any of their regular activities, mainly because of those cameras and invasion of their privacy, according to Addameer.

Female prisons reported that medical services were lacking, they complained from the bad behavior of the assigned Doctor at Hasharon, also the only treatment the doctor provided was to advice the prisoners to drink more water. They also reported that there was a shortage in the provision of food. Other than this, the female prisoners stated that there was no provision of hot water for around two months beginning of September 2018.

Since 1967, over 10,000 Palestinian women have been arrested and detained by Israeli occupation forces. In 2019, and just like previous years, Palestinian women and girls are routinely arrested from the streets, Israeli military checkpoints, and during violent night raids on their homes. Those military incursions are accompanied with the presence of Israeli soldiers, intelligence officers, and police dogs, during which destruction of household items and property damage takes place. They are blindfolded and handcuffed, and they are forcibly taken to a military jeep.

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