PHR warns of disaster in Israeli jails due to medical neglect

[ PIC 13/04/2013 – 02:44 PM ]

images_News_2013_04_13_prison_300_0[1]NAZARETH, (PIC)– Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) in the occupied Palestinian territories accused the Israeli medical system inside the prisons of abusing the Palestinian hunger striking prisoners and exercising pressures on them to stop their strike.

The human rights organization pointed out in a report issued on Friday that the prison administration violates the fundamental rights of hunger striking detainees, and refuses to allow independent physicians from outside the prison to visit and examine them.

The report also stated that the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) provides the hunger strikers with an “inadequate and insufficient medical follow up.”

It suggests that the ways in which the IPS medical system dealt with and handled the cases of hunger strikers over the past year underlines the high extent to which the prison medical system is amenable to the prison system, which is in turn amenable and subordinate to Israel’s political echelons.

“Information gathered over the course of the year also raises concerns that on account of this subordination, the prison medical system in fact operates according to political and security considerations, rather than medical considerations, the former of which runs contrary to the interests of the hunger striking patient, ” the report stated.

Anat Litvin, Director of Prisoners and Detainees Department in the PHR, called for taking strict measures against the prison administration and transferring control and responsibility for the medical services inside the prisons from the IPS to a professional and public medical body.

Litvin added that as long as the IPS medical system remains under the control and management of the prison system, with its political and security considerations, it will result in greater harm to the rights of prisoners.

Meanwhile, families of Prisoners and Jerusalemite Detainees Committee and the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) organized on Thursday at the Red Cross headquarters in Jerusalem the weekly sit-in, in solidarity with the prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails with the participation of dozens of prisoners’ families, national forces, factions’ representatives and liberated prisoners.

During the sit-in, the prisoners’ families raised the captives’ photos, and chanted slogans denouncing the continuation of the detention of patient and hunger striking prisoners.

Amjad Abu Assab, Head of the Families of Prisoners and Jerusalemite Detainees Committee, condemned the silence of the Arab and Islamic countries regarding the issue of hunger strikers.

For his part, the director of the PPS in Jerusalem, Nasser Qawas, pointed out during the protest that prisoner Samer al-Issawi suffers from extremely difficult conditions at Kaplan Hospital.

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