EP Body Slams Cruel Treatment of Palestinian Prisoners by Israel

The file photo shows Marwan Barghouti (C), a former top leader of the Palestinian Fatah Movement.

Brussels, 13 Shawwal 1438/8 July 2017 (MINA) – The European Parliament (EP) Delegation for relations with Palestine (DPAL) denounced Thursday as “outrageous and defamatory” accusations made by Israel against DPAL in view of the Delegation’s meeting Thursday with relatives of Palestinian prisoners who have recently undertaken a 40-day hunger strike.

The meeting of the Delegation will focus on the situation of Palestinian prisoners following this strike. Yet this meeting is being portrayed as “DPAL provides a voice for terror” by the Israeli embassy to the EU, said Neoklis Sylikiotis, chair of DPAL in a press statement.

“Equating the voice of family members with a ‘voice for terror’ is insulting and defamatory to these persons fighting for the basic rights of their imprisoned relatives,” he said.

“Such a spurious accusation flies in the face of the fact that it is Israel that is breaking international law and completely disrespecting human rights,” he noted.

He further said that 1,500 prisoners participated in this hunger strike who were calling for an end to administrative detention, torture, unfair trials, the detention of children, solitary confinement, degrading treatment and the denial of family visitation rights.

Palestinian prisoners are being held in Israeli jails in a clear violation of Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. As denounced by human rights NGOs, this is not only a clear violation of international law, but also cruel treatment, said the statement.

“We feel Israel’s relations with the EU and its standing in the international community would be much better served by the state’s authorities if they respected international law and human rights and by putting an end to a 50-year long occupation of Palestinian territory and the human rights violations this gives rise to,” T/RS5/RS1)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)