11th November 2013 | International Solidarity Movement, Rosa Schiano | Gaza, Occupied Palestine
On Monday morning, many relatives of Palestinian detainees, political representatives and solidarity activists attended the weekly rally at the International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza City.
In the first part of the sit-in, families of Fateh prisoners commemorated the ninth anniversary of Yasser Arafat’s death. Some of them held portraits of Arafat, waved Palestinian flags, and chanted slogans in homage to Arafat.
During the second part, women from Hamas rallied outside the Red Cross building.
Speakers praised the steadfastness of prisoners currently held in Israeli prisons and detention facilities and denounced the suffering from torture, medical negligence and human rights violations in Israeli jails. On 5 November, detainee Hasan Abdul-Halim Toraby, 22 years old, died at the Al-‘Affoula Israeli Hospital, after being denied necessary medical treatment. He suffered from leukemia, and was not provided the specialized treatment he urgently needed.
Like every Monday, mothers, wives, sisters, sons and daughters showed the pictures of their relatives, some of whom they hadn’t seen for years. “Mohammed has been in prison for six years,” said Rawda al-Najjar, mother of Mohammed Ismail al-Najjar, as she held his picture. “I have only seen him twice.”
Despite current negotiations and the recent release of some prisoners, Israeli forces are still kidnapping and arresting Palestinians, included children, and using administrative detention. On 10 November, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine organized a protest in solidarity with Palestinian academic and administrative detainee Ahmad Qatamesh and all administrative detainees in occupation prisons.
Palestinian families in Gaza will continue demanding the release of all prisoners, especially sick ones and administrative detainees.