Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer released a statement on Monday, International Day to Support Victims of Torture, highlighting Israel’s use of “torture and ill-treatment” on Palestinian detainees, which has led to the death of 73 Palestinians since 1967.
According to Addameer, Israeli authorities’ practice of torture, which it said has been carried out in a “systematic manner,” contravenes numerous international laws and conventions prohibiting the use of torture, and that Israeli prison officials are rarely held accountable for the abuse of Palestinian prisoners.
Since 1967, when Israel occupied the Palestinian territory, including the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, 73 Palestinian detainees have died in Israeli custody as a result of torture during interrogations, the group reported, the latest of whom was 30-year-old Arafat Jaradat who is believed to have been tortured to death in Israel’s Megiddo prison in 2013.
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Like Jaradat, many other Palestinians have been subjected to “psychological and physical torture” during Israeli interrogations, the group noted, as interrogations can last up to 75 days and lawyers can be denied access to the detainees for the first 60 days of the interrogation.
The group highlighted certain torture techniques used by Israeli authorities on Palestinians during interrogations, including,
“prolonged isolation from the outside world; inhuman detention conditions; excessive use of blindfolds and handcuffs; slapping and kicking; sleep deprivation; denial of food and water for extended periods of time; denial of access to toilets; denial of access to showers or change of clothes for days or weeks; exposure to extreme cold or heat; position abuse; yelling and exposure to loud noises; insults and cursing; arresting family members or alleging that family members have been arrested; sexual abuse; slaps, kicks and blows; and violent shaking.”
Addameer called on Antonio Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, to take action in order to ensure Israel abides by international law and to permit UN officials to visit Israel’s prisons in order to “monitor and investigate the conditions and allegations of torture.”
According to Addameer, 6,200 Palestinians were held in Israeli prisons as of May, most of whom “continue to suffer from systematic intentional torture and ill-treatment.”
(Maan, PC, Social Media)