“Whenever he spends a whole year between us and without being arrested we celebrate it”. This is what Om Asef , the wife of the Palestinian prisoner Omar Saleh Barghouty, 60 years old from Kobar town near the city of Ramallah, said about her husband’s suffering because of the repeated detentions and the long decades he spent in the Israeli jails.
Om Asef told Ahrar Center for Prisoners studies and human rights about Omar’s suffering, which is multiplied due to his deteriorated health situation and heart disease. Omar was arrested on 28/10/2010 and detained as administrative detainee till this moment as the Israelis renew his detention at the end of every six months.
“My husband Omar spent 26 years in prison, among them 10 years in the administrative detention. The 26 years were distributed at various prisons, during which he tasted all kinds of physical and psychological torture, he suffered for hundreds of hours of investigations, and the depravation from family visits.”
Om Asef continues her speech to Ahrar saying:” We got accustomed to his absence, but what hurts us most is the depravation from visiting him, my 11 years old son is the only one who has a permission to visit his father which is not satisfying at all for us to know exactly how he is going on behind those bars.”
Om Asef describes the administrative detention as the “Real Torture” for the prisoner and his family. A chain of repeated detentions which are renewed according to the Israeli mood and without single evidence against the prisoner.”
“Four of my sons and daughters got married; their father had never shared his family’s happiness or occasions. All of us are living on the hope of his coming back home, to live as a real family away from the fear of arrest and detentions. The only thing that helps us go on is our belief in God and the faith that he is going to be free soon.”
“My husband is not the only family member who is imprisoned in the Israeli jails. My son Asem, 26 years old is also sentenced for 11 years. He could not see his father for the last five years till that one month when they met each other in Ofer prison.”
Fuad Khuffash, Ahrar’s Director, said that Omar Barghouti is one of the deans of the prisoners in the Israeli jails and that he is the brother of the liberated dean prisoner Nael Barghouti who was liberated on “Wafa Ahrar”, the deal between the Resistance and Israel; However Omar could not see his brother since he was in the prison. Khuffash added that Omar Barghouti, a descendant of a great family who sacrificed the best of her youth and men between prisoners, martyrs and wounded.
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