Israel Plans Torture Center for Abducted Lebanese
|Monday, July 24,2006 00:00|
Acording to the Israeli news site Yedioth Internet, the “IDF [IOF] has started constructing a temporary detention center designed to hold the Lebanese prisoners that will be captured during army operations in Southern Lebanon…. The fact that the army was granted special permission from the Chief Military Rabbinate to continue with construction works throughout Saturday attests to the urgency attributed to the project.”
In other words, the abduction and torture of Lebanese Shi’a (who are all considered members of Hezbollah) has received the imprimatur of the highest religious authority in Israel. How these people sleep at night is a mystery.
During the last occupation of southern Lebanon, Israel used the Khiam prison to warehouse and torture Lebanese, a direct violation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, an agreement Israel is party to.
“Since the facility opened in 1985, hundreds of Lebanese have been arbitrarily detained in Khiam without charge for indefinite periods of time. Many of the detainees, including women, have been tortured during interrogation and subjected to abysmal conditions of confinement,” reported Human Rights Watch in 1999, a year before Hezbollah kicked the IOF out of Lebanon.
No doubt Israel’s new “detention facility” will mirror the torture chambers at Khiam.
“The prisoners’ testimonies and the cells bear witness to what went on inside,” explains Arjan El Fassed, writing for Electronic Intifada. “Prisoners were crammed into tiny, filthy spaces where they ate and slept. Those not in solitary confinement were allowed out once a week for 15 to 30 minutes in the ’sun room’ and open space surrounded by walls.”
In regard to the journalist Cosette Ibrahim, the Center for Media Freedom wrote: “On 2 September 1999, during a sweep in Rmeish, a village located near the Israeli-occupied South Lebanon zone, the South Lebanese Army (SLA) arrested Cosette while she was visiting her parents. She was arrested with her brother-in-law, De Gaulle Abu Tass, and another man, Samir Khiam. No official reason was given for the arrest. Reports by Lebanese human rights groups indicate that Cosette was arrested for refusing to collaborate with the pro-Israeli South Lebanese Army of General Antoine Lahad. Other reports attest that Cosette was arrested for her articles attacking the Israeli occupation of South Lebanon…. Cosette … has not been given a trial [and] may be held hostage for the purpose of negotiations with Hizbullah. This is illegal under Section 34 of the Fourth Geneva Convention ratified by Israel.”
But then Israel and the United States don’t do the Geneva Conventions.
“The detention center will be based on the model of previous prisons built in Israel such as Ktziot in the south and the Ofer base in Jerusalem,” Ynet continues. “During the Lebanon War, thousands of Lebanese detainees were incarcerated at the al-Hiyam [Khiam] prison located in Lebanese territory. Defense officials explained to Ynet that setting up a detention center on such a scale is proof of the Israeli government’s plans for an extensive operation that may last for months.”
In 2002, a Palestinian named Abed Khalil told the Inter Press Service Newswire about his stay in the Ketziot prison:
In testimony provided to Al-Haq (part of the Executive Committee of the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network), Ofer prison was described as follows:
In short, Israel plans to invade southern Lebanon again, kidnap Lebanese, and feed them into an illegal detention and torture system based on the notorious Khiam prison and torture camps where Palestinians are imprisoned for resisting the occupation.
In Israel, with racist and sociopathic Zionists at the helm, it will be business as usual in regard to the Lebanese people, who are considered little more than untermenschen.