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Israeli Authorities Holds Responsibility for Death of Prisoner in Their Custody


On Sunday, 8 September 2019, the prisoner Bassam Al Sayeh, 47, resident of the northern West Bank city of Nablus, was pronounced dead at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center after his of his health deteriorated following claimed medical negligence.


Al Sayeh was arrested on 28 October 2015 from the courtroom, while he was present at the trial of his wife, Mona Al Sayeh. According to Addameer Association for Prisoner Support and Human Rights, he was subjected to torture and ill-treatment while in detention, even though he was a cancer patient.


He spent most of the detention period in Al Ramleh prison, and his health condition worsened in the last two months as he suffered heart failure and acute infection of lungs. Israeli authorities did not respond to appeals calling for his release and first transferred him to Al Ramleh clinic and then to Assaf Harofeh Medical Center, where he died on Sunday.


Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons experience practices and policies that violate the rights guaranteed under International law, including medical negligence, depravation of lawyers’ visits for 21 days, and ill-treatment during arrest and the interrogation.


Al Mezan’s documentation indicates that this is the third Palestinian to die in Israeli custody in 2019. the Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs pointed out that the number of rose to 221 since 1967, Of them 75 were allegedly ‘liquidated after arrest’, 72 died as a result of torture, 67 due to medical negligence, and seven were shot directly by prisons’ guards.


Al Mezan condemns the violation of prisoners’ rights. Persons deprived of liberty must be treated with dignity at all times in accordance with the relevant international law standards.  Medical negligence has been a serious concern and must be stopped. Al Mezan expresses deep concern about the life and wellbeing of prisoners who suffer health conditions while in Israeli custody and calls on international community to insist on the respect of international human rights law and IHL relevant to the treatment of prisoners and detainees.


Al Mezan calls for an independent international investigation to investigate the death of Al Sayeh.


Al Mezan calls on the United Nations and the international community to intervene to halt grave violations against Palestinian prisoners and detainees and ensure that the Israeli authorities comply with their legal obligations to respect their rights.


Tags / #detention #torture