‘No Caloric Surplus’ – Ben-Gvir Orders Minimum Food Rations for Palestinian Prisoners 

Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir. (Photo: video grab)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Itamar Ben-Gvir claims such “deterrent” measures will avoid potential harm from Palestinians committing “terrorist acts” even when in prisons.

Israel’s National Security Minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir has said that he has ordered a reduction in food rations for Palestinian prisoners as a “deterrence” measure.

His comments are in response to a request for clarification by the Israeli Supreme Court regarding the fact that the portion of food received by Palestinian prisoners is far less than what is stipulated by international law, the Middle East Monitor (MEMO) reported on Thursday.

“The Palestinian detainees will receive the minimum rights and the minimum food, and I will ensure that this policy is implemented,” Ben-Gvir said. “This policy is to reduce the food ration for security prisoners to the minimum food and calorie ration required by law, and that security prisoners must receive a smaller ration than criminal prisoners.”

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Ben-Gvir said that when Israel’s war on Gaza began last October, it was decided to reduce activity in prisons.

“In this context, we decided to stop (allowing) purchases from canteens and to change the method of purchasing and providing food to security prisoners.”

Such “deterrent” measures, he claimed, will avoid potential harm from Palestinians committing “terrorist acts” even when in prisons.

‘No Starvation’

The Israeli Haaretz newspaper reported Ben-Gvir as having written a personal letter to the petitioners, stating: “There is no starvation, but my policy does call for reducing conditions, including food and calories.”

He added, “The current menu contains 200 calories more than the caloric average, and I have instructed the Prison Service to present a new menu within 15 days without any caloric surplus.”

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“Based on what I have been told by certified intelligence experts, the changes in incarceration conditions, including the changes in food, are directly affecting deterrence, with potential assailants abstaining from committing terrorist actions so as not to be put in ‘the occupation’s prisons’,” he continued.

Haaretz said the petition filed by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) followed “the dozens of testimonies from security prisoners and detainees who are not connected with Hamas that the Prison Service has significantly reduced their food rations, to the point of starvation, causing them to shed dozens of kilograms.”

Israeli forces have arrested approximately 9,360 Palestinians, including women and children, since October 7, according to the Palestinian Prisoners Society.


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