RAMALLAH, Friday, September 10, 2021 (WAFA) – Palestinians across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem are holding protests in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners subject to brutal mistreatment in Israeli jails.
Protestors took to the streets in several West Bank districts condemning the repressive and punitive measures the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) has imposed on prisoners in the wake of the escape of six prisoners from Israel’s most secure prisons.
In Nablus district, Israeli forces cracked down on a protest at Jabal Sbeih (Sbeih Mountain) a scene of weekly Friday protests against Israeli settler-colonialism and land pillage, near Beita town, south of the city.
Ahmad Jibril, the head of the Emergency and Ambulance Department at the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS), confirmed that Ala Badarneh, a journalist, was hit with a rubber-coated steel bullet in the chest, while covering the events.
He added that a protestor sustained bruises due to falling from a high place after being chased by the soldiers during confrontations.
In Hebron district, a sizable Israeli force violently dispersed a rally in solidarity with prisoners in Beit Ummar town, north of the city, firing concussion and tear gas bombs towards the participants. No injuries were reported though.
In Jerusalem, large reinforcements of police barged their way into Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, and occupied the rooftop of the Dome of the Rock and the vicinity of Bab al-Rahma prayer area as a means to prevent a rally in protest with prisoners.
Palestinians organized rallies in solidarity with other prisoners in Israeli jails after the Israeli special units and soldiers cracked down on several prisons in an attempt to disperse some 400 prisoners affiliated with Islamic Jihad and relocate them to other prisons, prompting prisoners to set seven cells on fire.
The planned relocation of the Jihad-affiliated prisoners was part of a set of punitive and repressive measures taken by the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) following Monday’s escape of the six prisoners.
Other than the planned redistribution or dispersion of Jihad-affiliated prisoners, the punitive measures imposed by IPS included banning prisoners from leaving their rooms, depriving them of using facilities such as sinks, kitchens and cafeterias, in addition to banning lawyers and family visits.
Reports have surfaced of beatings, torture, the use of additional restraints, confiscations, and other abuses by Israeli wardens against defenseless prisoners.
This has prompted the Palestinian Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs Commission to caution against sliding into “open confrontation” in prisons.