Ministry of detainees calls on Red Cross to protect families of prisoners

Ministry of detainees calls on Red Cross to protect families of prisoners

The Palestinian ministry of prisoners’ affairs appealed to international organizations especially the Red Cross, which oversees the visit program in Israeli jails, to take measures to protect the families of Palestinian prisoners from being assaulted by Israeli settlers.

In a statement, information director of the ministry Riyadh Al-Ashqar expressed his deep concern over the safety of families of Palestinian prisoners in light of news reports talking about the intention of the parents of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and a number of settlers to close the roads leading to a number of Israeli jails and attack the families on their way to visit their sons.

Ashqar added that the settlers claim that such acts would force the families of Palestinian prisoners to pressure Hamas to accept the prisoner swap deal.

He noted that the Israeli settlers’ aggressive acts against the families of prisoners escalated significantly in recent months, citing as an example the incidents that took place near Anab checkpoint, east of Tulkarem, and the Negev area, when Israeli armed settlers attacked buses boarded by families of prisoners.

In another context, the ministry of prisoners called on international organizations especially the UN commission of human rights to intervene to repeal the law of unlawful combatant adopted by Israel in 2002, which it used against Gaza prisoners after the Israeli withdrawal from the Strip and which escalated after the last war.

In a statement to the Quds Press on Saturday, the ministry said that the international law does not permit the use of such a law because it seriously violates the standards of protection to be provided to detainees according to the rules of the international humanitarian law.

The ministry added that the international silence on Israel’s violations and repressive acts against the Palestinian people and their prisoners makes it invent constantly such laws and then confer legitimacy on them through its courts and official institutions in order to impose them as a fait accompli.