By TONY SEED
Abdul-Nasser Ferwana,* head of the Census Department of the Palestinian Committee of Detainees and Ex-Detainees, stated Sunday that the Israeli army has kidnapped 6,059 Palestinians in 2014, as well as arresting 1,266 children.
The former political prisoner said, similar to previous years, that the arrests carried out by the army targeted all sectors of Palestinian society, with a dangerous escalation in the abduction and imprisonment of children.
“There hasn’t been a single day that did not witness the abduction of Palestinians,” Ferwana said. “On average, the army has kidnapped 505 Palestinians each month; approximately 17 a day.”
The arrests in 2014 rose by a 56 per cent increase, compared to 2013, a 57.5 per cent increase compared to 2012, and an 83 per cent increase in comparison to 2012, the Palestinian official remarked, adding: “This clearly indicates a sharp escalation and increase in the number of arrests in the past four years.
Ferwana said the arrests are largely carried out as “acts of revenge” and retaliation against a civilian population, and that most of the kidnapped Palestinians have nothing to do with Acts “that Could endanger the security of Israel.” He added that hundreds of Palestinians have been kidnapped and released shortly afterwards, without even being sent to court or any facing charges. The army kidnapped more than 4000 Palestinians since June 12 when three settlers went missing.
Ferwana also said that every Palestinian who was kidnapped and imprisoned by Israel was subjected to at least one form of physical or psychological torture, in addition to humiliation and abuse, either in public or in front of their families — an issue which constitutes a direct violation of International/Humanitarian Law.
Ferwana has called on all pertaining legal and human rights groups, as well as various media agencies, in order to highlight the detainees’ cause and the ongoing suffering of the Palestinian people, adding that detainees are subject to daily violations and assaults.
Arrests carried out by the army in 2014:
1. January: 360 Palestinians.
2. February: 317 Palestinians.
3. March: 377 Palestinians.
4. April: 355 Palestinians.
5. May: 390 Palestinians.
6. June: 800 Palestinians.
7. July: 750 Palestinians.
8. August: 620 Palestinians.
9. September: 580 Palestinians.
10. October 390 Palestinians.
11. November: 600 Palestinians.
12.December 520 Palestinians.
And requires urgent intervention by the international community and various institutions to protect these children from the arrests and the accompanying followed, and torture committed against them and gross violations and depriving inside Israeli jails.
1,266 Palestinian children arrested by Israel in 2014; 3,755 over past four years
The targeting by the Israeli occupation authorities of Palestinian children detained and put them in Israeli prisons and detention centers, has escalated dangerously and is worrying. During the last four years, 3,755 children were arested, which poses a real threat to the reality of Palestinian children and their future, Ferwana said.
He added that the occupation authorities arrested 1266 children during 2014. The vast majority of those who had been arrested were in the second half of the year, while these arrests accounted for an increase of 36 per cent from the previous year. The largest increase 7 , 43 per cent for the year 2012. And an increase of about 87 per cent for the year 2011. This shows clearly that the detention of children and the Israeli targeting of Palestinian children, especially in the occupied Jerusalem size, is rising dramatically. About 700 children from the group were detained children from Jerusalem, and these make up 55.3 per cent of the total of detained children.
He revealed that the children’s testimony confirm that all of them had been – in varying degrees – subjected to one or more of the forms of torture and abuse, humiliation and denial of basic human rights. In some cases, some of the illegal settlements were turned into centres for the investigation and the threat, pressure and extract confessions from them under torture. The Israeli military courts do not take into account the status and rights, and the nature of the circumstances and procedures that they have suffered, some of which made for coerced confessions.
6500 Palestinians, including 200 children, currently held by Israel
The website palestinebehindbars.org reports that according to the latest statistics the total number of prisoners and detainees in Israeli jails a day is about 6,500, spread over about 18 prisons and detention centres. Many more have been released after a brief period without being indicted or being brought to Israeli courts.
There are 200 children under the age of 18 years, 21 girls and women, and nearly 500 administrative detainees, held without charge or trial, These include 23 elected members of the Palestinian Legislative Council , most notably the President of the Legislative Council D.aziz Dweik, and the Secretary General of the Popular Front, Comrade Ahmad Sa’adat, and member of the Central Committee of Fatah, the brother Marwan Barghouti, in addition to the two former ministers, two Isa Al-Jabari and Minister of Local Government, former The Minister Wasfi Kabha. This is in addition to the presence of 31 prisoners who have been held for more than twenty years – thirty of them detained since before Oslo and the establishment of the Palestinian National Authority on the fourth of May / May of 1994. Among these, 16 prisoners have been held for more than a quarter of a century, while the oldest has been detained for 32 years.
Farawana pointed to the presence of 478 prisoners serving life sentences (for life) once or several times, at the top of which is the captive Abdullah Barghouti, who is serving a life sentence (67) times, in addition to 250 years .
Abdul-Nasser Ferwana expressed serious concern due to the increasing and dangerous numbers of sick prisoners, and the deterioration of the health status of a number of them, due to poor conditions of detention and cruel treatment, and the continuation of the policy of medical neglect and scarcity of necessary medicines and treatment.
One quarter of detainees are sick and ailing
The total number of ailing Detainees or patients has risen to more than 1,500 detainees, sspecially due to the lack of adequate and specialized medical attention, and even basic treatment. They suffer from various diseases, including dozens in critical and serious condition; some of them lack the ability to move and go to the toilet alone. Due to the seriousness of the disease and the severity of the pain and because of the paralysis of the body, or because of the amputation of the body, many have lost the ability to walk, while several detainees have had limbs amputated.
In addition, Ferwana says every Palestinian Detainee suffered from at least one form of torture or violence, physical and emotional, in addition to degrading treatment targeting them and their families.
Living conditions violate the basic principles of human rights, all related international conventions and Agreements. Abd’ Al Nasser A. Ferwana called on the international community, all related human rights and legal groups, all related human rights and legal groups, to perform their duties and pressure Israel into abiding by all agreements and human rights treaties.
*Former Detainee, Director of Statistics Department in the Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs, and head of the committee to manage its office in the Gaza Strip.