UN Slams Israel over Palestinian Prisoners' Conditions amid Hunger-Strike

تم نشره في Thu 25 May / May 2017. 12:00 AM - آخر تعديل في Thu 25 May / May 2017. 09:16 PM
  • Protestors in Palestine over the Palestinian Hunger-Strike - (Getty)

CAPITALS — A UN human rights official on Wednesday insisted Israel should improve conditions for Palestinians in Israeli prisons, especially of those who are currently conducting a hunger-strike, which today entered its 39th day.

"I am especially alarmed by reports of punitive measures by the Israeli authorities against the hunger strikers, including restricted access to lawyers and the denial of family visits," Zeid Ra'ad Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said in a statement.

Hussein emphasised on the fact that having access to human rights lawyers is an essential right for prisoners, which in the context of Palestinian prisoners, would protect them from the human rights violations they endure inside Israeli prisoners.

He also said the health of hundreds of the hunger-strikers had "deteriorated significantly".

Last week, Palestinian protestors shut down the UN headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Wednesday to condemn the UN's "silence" about a mass hunger strike being carried out by Palestinian detainees held in Israeli jails.

Several, mostly young, demonstrators stood outside the local UN headquarters in Ramallah, carrying Palestinian flags and signs denouncing the UN, and preventing staff from entering the building.

More than 1,600 prisoners took part in the hunger strike that began on 17 April, ingesting only water and salt. By the beginning of May, the number of strikers has now decreased to just below 1,000 people.

However, some Palestinian sources claim the number of people joining the hunger strikes have risen by at least 300 since the drop in strikers.

Some 6,500 Palestinians are currently being detained by Israel for a range of offences and alleged crimes. Around 500 are held under administrative detention, which allows imprisonment without charge.

Palestinian prisoners have mounted repeated hunger strikes, however, this protest is reportedly the largest protest in recent times.

(The New Arab)