Israeli Prison Guards Raid Ashkelon Prison, 9 Palestinians Wounded

Israeli prison guards stormed the Palestinian section of Ashkelon prison on Monday morning, wounding nine prisoners in a raid that lasted several hours.

Israeli forces raided rooms 15 and 16 of section number three in Ashkelon Prison around 11 a.m. on Monday, the Palestinian Prisoners’ society said.

The raid injured nine Palestinian prisoners, while the rest of the Palestinian prisoners in rooms 15 and 16 were transferred to other cells.

Five Israeli guards were also injured in the raids.

Section three is the only section of the prison exclusively for Palestinian detainees.

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society also said that the prison authority has imposed sanctions on the Palestinian prisoners by cutting off water and electricity, restrictions that as of Tuesday morning were still in place.

The chairman of the Released Prisoners’ Association in Bethlehem, Mohammad Hamieda, told Ma’an in a phone interview that the Israel prison guards raided Ashkelon Prison and fired tear gas bombs inside the prisoners’ rooms.

They also assaulted them and beat them up with batons, he added.

5,200 Palestinians were being held in Israeli jails as of Oct. 2013, according to the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs. Another 1,280 are in Israeli prisons for being inside Israel without permits.

Since 1967, more than 650,000 Palestinians have been detained by Israel, representing 20% of the total population and 40% of all males in the occupied territories.

Under international law, it is illegal to transfer prisoners outside of the occupied territory in which they are detained, and the families of Palestinian prisoners’ face many obstacles in obtaining permits to see their imprisoned relatives.

(Ma’an – www.maannews.net)

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