Ministry asks Red Cross to pressure Israel into allowing visits to prisoners

[ 09/05/2011 – 10:35 AM ]

GAZA, (PIC)– The Gaza ministry of prisoners called on the Red Cross to exert more efforts to alleviate the suffering of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli occupation jails and to reactivate the program of visits by relatives from Gaza that had stopped for the past four years.

The ministry said in a press release on Monday on the occasion of the international day for the Red Cross and Red Crescent, which fell on Sunday, that the Red Cross was established as an international organization helping human beings at times of crises in all four corners of the world.

It noted that the Red Cross had genuinely shouldered its responsibility in various areas of the world but when it comes to Israel it could not extend such assistance and does not pressure Israel to abide by international doctrines.

The ministry pointed out that the Red Cross has been unable to resume the program of visits by relatives of Gaza prisoners, which stopped since June 2007 and which was under its supervision. It added that the Red Cross could not even take necessary needs and supplies to the Gaza prisoners and was content with playing the role of a postman carrying messages to and from those prisoners, even with delays.

The ministry expressed hope that the Red Cross would double its efforts and persuade the UN and decision makers in various countries to pressure Israel into respecting international agreements regarding prisoners and halting all forms of violations against them including their right to receive visitors, especially relatives, as stipulated in the fourth Geneva convention.

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