‘Beyond Imagination’ – Lawyer Hears Testimony of Torture, Rape at Israeli Detention Camp

Mohammed Saber Arab, 42, has described multiple instances of torture at the Israeli Sde Teiman detention camp. (Photo: video grab)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Reports of abuse at Sde Teiman have already emerged in both Israeli and Arab media, following outcries from local and international rights groups about the horrific conditions there.

A detained Palestinian journalist from Gaza has described multiple instances of torture, abuse and rape that he and other detainees endured at the Israeli Sde Teiman detention camp in the Naqab (Negev) desert.

Mohammed Saber Arab, 42, detailed his harrowing experiences to his lawyer, Khaled Mahajneh, during a recent visit to the detention center. Mahajneh is reportedly the first Palestinian lawyer to be granted access to the interrogation facility since October 7.

Arab, who worked as a correspondent for Al Araby TV, was detained from Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza amid a large-scale Israeli assault in March.

The Commission of Detainees’ Affairs and the Palestinian Prisoners Society confirmed in a joint statement the visit by Mahajneh to Arab, who had been unaware of his location in the Sde Teiman camp until the lawyer informed him, the Anadolu news agency reported.

The statement highlighted Arab’s testimony as one of many disturbing accounts from released Gaza detainees about the inhumane conditions of their captivity.

These accounts include reports of detainees dying as well as enduring torture, abuse and rape.

Blindfolded and Handcuffed

Mahajneh, who described the detention conditions as “criminal” and “beyond imagination” learned that more than 1,000 detainees abducted from Gaza were being held at the facility.

Arab said that detainees are kept blindfolded and handcuffed 24 hours a day. He noted that for 50 days, he had not changed his clothes and was only allowed to change his pants before the visit.

‘Dead or Alive?’ – NYT Report Reveals Torture, Abuse inside Israel’s Detention Center

Detainees are subjected to continuous torture, physical and sexual abuse and humiliation, leading to deaths among them, he said.

According to the Quds News Network, Mahajneh also learned that six prisoners were subjected to sexual assault and rape by Israeli soldiers, in front of the other detainees.

Arab noted that conversations between detainees are prohibited, with severe beatings as punishment for violations, forcing detainees to talk to themselves and silently pray as they are deprived of religious practices.

The journalist pointed out that some detainees had their limbs amputated and bullets removed without anesthesia, the Anadolu report said.

Surrounded by Police Dogs

Police dogs constantly surround the detainees, and only four detainees are allowed one minute in the bathroom at a time, with punishments for exceeding this limit.

Detainees sleep on the ground, using their shoes as pillows, he said, adding that bathing is permitted once a week for only one minute and sleeping during the day is not allowed.

Arab also said that 50 days after his arrest, he was finally allowed to shave, and meals consisted of small portions of labneh, or strained yogurth, and pieces of cucumber or tomato.

Prominent Palestinian Doctor, Iyad Rantisi, Dies during Interrogation in Israel

Outcry From Rights Groups

Last week, the New York Times (NYT) reported that Israel was carrying out a policy of systematic torture in the army base of Sde Teiman.

Reports of abuse at Sde Teiman had already emerged in both Israeli and Arab media, following outcries from local and international rights groups about the horrific conditions there.

The NYT investigation revealed that 1,200 Palestinian civilians were detained at Sde Teiman “in demeaning conditions without the ability to plead their cases to a judge for up to 75 days.” Additionally, detainees were denied “access to lawyers for up to 90 days”.

An Israeli soldier who served at Sde Teiman disclosed to the NYT that his fellow soldiers often bragged about beating detainees, and he observed signs of such treatment.

“Of the 4,000 detainees housed at Sde Teiman since October, 25 have died either at the site or after being brought to nearby civilian hospitals,” the NYT reported, citing officers at the base.

In May, CNN reported that three Israeli whistleblowers working at the Sde Teiman detention camp revealed systemic abuses by the military, including prisoners being restrained, blindfolded, and forced to wear diapers.

They described “a routine search when the guards would unleash large dogs on sleeping detainees, lobbing a sound grenade at the enclosure as troops barged in.”

“They stripped them down of anything that resembles human beings,” the sources told CNN.

Horrific Details about Palestinian Detainees in Naqab Revealed – CNN

Located approximately 18 miles from the Gaza separation line, the facility is said to be divided into two sections: enclosures where around 70 Palestinian detainees from Gaza are subjected to extreme physical restraint, and a field hospital where injured detainees are immobilized, diapered, and fed through straws.

Dr Iyad Rantisi

The Haaretz newspaper reported on Tuesday that Dr Iyad Rantisi, 53, died last November under interrogation by the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security service, six days after his detention.

Dr Rantisi was the director of the Kamal Adwan Hospital in Beit Lahia, in the northern Gaza Strip.

“He was arrested November 11 and was declared dead six days later at Shikma Prison, the site of a Shin Bet interrogation facility,” the report said, adding that, “according to the Shin Bet, he was interrogated on suspicion of involvement in holding Israeli hostages in Gaza.”

The cause of death is unclear but Israel has been repeatedly accused of “systematic torture” against Palestinian prisoners detained from Gaza during the ongoing genocidal war.

(PC, Anadolu, QNN)

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1 Comment

  1. Unbelievably disgusting, sadistic actions. All the perpetrators should be behind bars and the detainees freed (and paid massive sums of money.)

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