Bassam al-Sayyeh

September 8th, 2019: Bassam al-Sayyeh, 47, died in an Israeli prison, due to medical negligence, according to the Palestinian Detainees and Ex-Detainees Commission.

Al-Sayyeh, 47, was detained on August 10, 2015, he was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2011 and blood cancer in 2013.

The commission held the Israeli government fully responsible for the racist crimes committed against Palestinians, including the physical and psychological torture and medical negligence of prisoners, among other violations, calling for an investigation into these crimes.

His wife, a former political prisoner, identified as Mona Hayes, said that she has been barred from visiting him for the last two years.

She added that he started suffering from various serious health conditions four years ago and never received specialized medical care, and over the past year, Bassam suffered serious health issues, and was hospitalized in Israel hospitals, then to Ramla hospital.

His latest setback resulted in clinical death due to renal failure and Kidney failure, due to the lack of adequate and profession medical treatment.

The Palestine News Network (PNN) has reported that the detainee also”received chemotherapy by incompetent physicians and lost his life due to pulmonary edema, cirrhosis and cardiac failure.”

His lawyer tried to get Israeli courts to release him so that he can receive specialized medical care in Palestine or abroad, but all appeals were denied.

Former political prisoner, Khader Adnan from Arraba near the northern West Bank city of Jenin, who held extended hunger strike while in Israeli prisons and faced near death conditions, said the death of Sayeh requires real solidarity and action to expose the Israeli crimes against the detainees, and the seriously escalating violations, and warned that without such an action, this death will not be the last.

The death of al-Sayyeh brings the number of Palestinian prisoners who died in Israeli jails since 1967 to 221 prisoners.

At least 700 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails suffer from serious health conditions, 160 of whom are in need of urgent medical follow-up.

Palestinians have accused the Israeli authorities of failing to provide proper medical treatment, or of delaying treatment to ill prisoners, causing a deterioration in their health.

According to Addameer Prisoners Support and Human Rights organization, “in regard to adequate medical attention and treatment, Article 91 [of the Fourth Geneva Convention] emphasizes that “every place of internment shall have an adequate infirmary…” and that “Internees may not be prevented from presenting themselves to the medical authority for examination.”

In addition to this article, Article 92 asserts that “Medical inspections of internees shall be made at least once a month…”. It is evident that the withholding of treatment, or access to a medical professional, is a violation of these specific provisions, and therefore a violation of international humanitarian law.”

Bassam was from the northern West Bank district of Nablus. Source: IMEMC

Nasser Majed Taqatqa

July 16, 2019: Nasser Majed Taqatqa, 31, died after having been tortured in an Israeli prison and then placed in solitary confinement in Nitzan Israeli Prison.

The Palestinian Prisoner Society reported that the autopsy revealed that Nasser died due to extreme torture and abuse by Israeli interrogators and soldiers.

In its report, the PPS stated that the detainee was constantly tortured during interrogation in Majeddo Israeli prison.

The PPS said the detainee, Nasser Majed Taqatqa, 31, was t abducted on June 19th, 2019, after the soldiers invaded his home in Beit Fajjar town, and was transferred to the al-Maskobiyya interrogation facility in occupied Jerusalem. This was his first time in Israeli custody.

The detainee was later transferred to the al-Jalama interrogation facility, where he was interrogated and tortured again, and started suffering from serious complications due to physical and psychological abuse.

In addition, sworn testimonies provided by Palestinian detainees who saw Taqatqa, said that he was forced into solitary confinement in Majeddo prison, where he was once again tortured and restrained in a bed.

On July 11th, the administration in Majeddo refused to remove him from solitary confinement, and place him with other detainees, under the pretext of him being punished.

On July 14th, he was moved to an Israeli hospital in al-Ramla due to serious deterioration in his health, and on July 16th, Israel announced his death in a solitary confinement cell in Nitzan (al-Ramla) prison.

Qaddoura Fares, the head of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) said the detainee is not the first to be tortured, especially to death, and added that most imprisoned Palestinians are tortured and subjected to very difficult conditions, in addition to being deprived the right to proper medical attention, in direct violation of International Law, and all related agreements and treaties.

It also denied allegations by the Israel Prison Authority about his death and confirmed that the Palestinian did not have any preexisting health conditions.

The PPS held Israel fully responsible for his death, especially while under interrogation, as Palestinian detainees are frequently physically and psychologically tortured, in addition to the very bad living conditions they face, and the lack of medical treatment.

The PPS stated that the death of Taqatqa brings the number of detainees, who were killed or died in Israeli prisons since 1967, to 220.

The International Red Cross sent its condolences to the family and stated that although it does not take part in investigation committees or autopsy, it will be following the case closely with the Israeli authorities and the family.

It added that it is following the detainee’s death with great concern and advised refraining from publishing sensitive information for the privacy of the family.

In a statement, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) called for an immediate and impartial investigation into Taqatqa’s death while in solitary confinement in Nitzan (al-Ramla) Prison.

It quoted his family stating that the detainee did not have any health issues and was a completely healthy young man when he was taken prisoner.

The PCHR said:

According to human rights organizations’ reports followed up by PCHR’s field workers, Israeli forces arrested Taqatqa on 19 June 2019 after raiding his house in Beit Fajjar and taking him to al-Jalamah Center for investigation.

On 09 July 2019, the Israeli forces again raided and searched his family house while he was in prison.  Two weeks after his arrest, the Israeli authorities sent Taqatqa to solitary confinement in “Nitzan” Prison (al-Ramla) in Israel to continue investigating with him.

Lawyer Raji Sourani, PCHR’s Director, commented on that by saying, “Israel has a record of prior incidents which prove Israeli security services’ involvement in torture, inhuman treatment, and deliberate medical negligence against dozens of prisoners as part of an Israeli systematic policy and under legal cover. Taqatqa, as said, did not have any health issues prior to his arrest, so his death during investigation raises suspicions, which urge opening an investigation into possible occurrence of torture and medical negligence.”

Taqatqa’s family said that this was his first arrest, and they knew about his death via media.  Thus, they contacted the lawyer of the Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs Committee to confirm this news.

PCHR emphasizes that living conditions of around 5800 Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails continue to deteriorate; 700 of them who suffer chronic diseases and do not receive the adequate healthcare.  PCHR also holds the Israeli government fully responsible for the death of Taqatqa and calls for a prompt and impartial investigation into the death circumstances.

Nasser was from Beit Fajjar town, south of the West Bank city of Bethlehem. Source: IMEMC

Yasser Hamed Eshteyya

February 8, 2019: Yasser Hamed Eshteyya, 36, died in the Israeli prison of Beersheba (Be’er as-Sabe’) due to a lack of adequate medical treatment.

The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee reported that Yasser was serving a life term in Israeli prison after he was convicted of a criminal charge in 2009.

Israeli sources said Eshteyya was found dead in his cell, and the Israeli Prison Authority “initiated an investigation into his death.”

His death just came two days after another political prisoner, identified as Fares Baroud, 51, from Shati’ refugee camp in Gaza, died due to the lack of medical treatment.

Yasser was from Tal village, southwest of the northern West Bank city of Nablus. Source: IMEMC

Fares Mohammad Baroud

February 6, 2019: Fares Mohammad Baroud, 51, died of medical neglect in an Israeli prison.

According to the Palestinian Detainees Committee,Fares was a Palestinian detainee from Gaza, who had been held by Israel since 1991. He died from serious complications resulting from being denied required specialized medical attention.

The Committee stated that the detainee died shortly after being moved to Soroka Israeli medical center.

It added that, although the details of his death remain unclear, Baroud has been facing several health conditions for many years and was not granted urgently needed professional medical treatment.

On November 18, 2018, the detainee, who was also suffering from a psychological condition, suffered an internal hemorrhage and was moved to Soroka after losing consciousness.

He later underwent a surgery where the doctors removed a part of his liver and a blood vessel leading to it.

The Detainees Committee held the Ramon Prison administration and the Israeli government responsible for Baroud’s death, as it is just one example of the numerous and ongoing serious violations against the Palestinian detainees, depriving them from basic life-saving medical attention.

Baroud was taken prisoner on March 23, 1991 and was sentenced to a life-term after being convicted of killing an Israeli colonialist settler.

He has been denied visits since the year 2000, and was supposed to be released as part of the fourth phase of a prisoner release agreement reached in late 2013, but Israel unilaterally voided the deal.

As part of that agreement, Israel was supposed to release all long-term detainees who had spent many years in prison, in four phases, in order to facilitate the resumption of direct “peace talks”. But the Israeli government backed out of the deal before implementing the final phase, which included 30 detainees.

His death brings the number of detainees who died in Israeli prisons since the year 1967 to 218, including 63 who died after being denied the required essential medical treatment.

Fares was from the Shati’ refugee camp, west of Gaza city. Source: IMEMC

 

Wisam Abdul-Majid Shalalda

October 12, 2018: Wisam Abdul-Majid Shalalda, 28, died in an Israeli prison where he had been held prisoner since 2015.

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) reported that Wisam died in Ayalon Israeli prison, in Ramla.

The PPS added that the circumstances of his death remain unknown, while members of Shalalda’s family said they were only informed that he had a stroke, and were asked to head to Abu Kabeer Israeli Forensic Institute to identify his body.

The PPS said the detainee, a married father of four children, was taken prisoner in 2015, and was sentenced to seven years in prison.

It held Israel responsible for his death, especially due to the extremely bad living conditions the detainees face, the lack of proper medical treatment, and added that the “silence of the international community encourages Israel to continue and escalate its violations.”

It is worth mentioning that Shalalda is the fourth detainee who died in Israeli prisons, or after being detained, since the beginning of this year.

The first is Yassin Saradeeh, 33, who was killed on February 22, 2018, by Israeli soldiers who shot him, then beat him repeatedly while he was lying on the ground.

The second is Aziz ‘Oweisat, 53, who died at an Israeli hospital, on May 20, 2018, from serious complications when he was assaulted by several soldiers in the prison, after they claimed he attacked an officer with a sharp object.

The third is Mohammad Zaghloul al-Khatib, 24, who was killed, on September 18, 2018, by Israeli soldiers who invading his home at dawn, before abducting and repeatedly assaulting him.

Wisam was from Sa’ir town, northeast of the southern West Bank city of Hebron. Source: IMEMC

Aziz ‘Oweisat

May 20, 2018: Aziz ‘Oweisat, 53, died at an Israeli hospital from serious complications after he was assaulted by several Israeli soldiers in the prison, after they claimed he attacked an officer with a sharp object.

The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee said ‘Oweisat was taken prisoner on March 24, 2014, and was sentenced to a life term.

The Committee added that he suffered brain hemorrhage and a heart attack after the soldiers continuously assaulting him in Eshil Israeli prison, on May 2, 2018, and went into a coma before he was moved to Ramla Israeli Medical Center.

Later, the detainee was moved to Assaf Harofeh Medical Center due to the seriousness of his condition, but he suffered further deterioration, and was transferred to Tal HaShomer Medical Center.

On May 10th, 2018, he underwent heart surgery at Tal HaShomer Israeli Medical Center.

Despite his serious condition, he was returned to Assaf Harofeh Medical Center, after the Administration of Tal HaShomer refused to keep him hospitalized at their facility.

The Detainees’ Committee said he died at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center, due to the seriousness of his condition.

Prior to his death, the Committee filed an urgent appeal with an Israeli court asking for his release so that he could receive steady medical attention, and the court scheduled the hearing for May 25th. He did not make it to the hearing, however, since he died on May 20th.

The detainees in Israeli prisons and detention camps declared a three-day mourning period, and demanded that Israel be held accountable for its violations and crimes.

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) held Israel fully responsible for his death, especially since the Israeli Prison Authority refused to release him despite its knowledge of his serious condition.

It added that seven Palestinian detainees have died in the last five years after being denied medical attention, in addition to ‘Oweisat.

The PPS also said that 216 Palestinians have died in Israeli prisons and interrogation centers since Israel occupied the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, Golan and East Jerusalem, in 1967.

It added that 75 detainees were executed after the soldiers arrested them, 72 died while being tortured during interrogation, 7 were killed by the soldiers in prisons, and 62 died after being denied medical treatment.

The head of the Palestinian Detainees’ Committee, Issa Qaraqe, accused Israel of deliberately killing the detainee, and called for establishing an international committee to investigate Israeli crimes and violations against the detainees. Aziz was from Jabal al-Mokabber in Jerusalem. Source: IMEMC