September 9th 2021
Israeli Government’s Collective Punishment of Palestinian Prisoners
Following the successful escape of six Palestinian prisoners from Israel’s high security Gilboa prison on Monday September 6th, Israel has retaliated by inflicting a brutal campaign of collective punishment. Under the Geneva Conventions, collective punishment for acts committed by individuals is a war crime.
Israel’s collective punishment of prisoners is being implemented under the false pretext of searching for the escapees. All sections of all prisons have been locked down, prisoners are being beaten and forced into solitary and collective isolation, denied sufficient food and water, moved arbitrarily, and heavily restricted by the withdrawal of their prisoners’ benefits. Israeli authorities have also arrested family members of the escapees.
It is important to note that as an occupying power, Israel is prohibited by the Fourth Geneva Convention from detaining any Palestinians inside of Israel, as they are protected persons under occupation. Additionally, Palestinians in Israeli prisons are regularly subjected to grave violations of international law including physical and psychological torture, deliberate medical neglect, arbitrary rejection of visits from family or lawyers, and solitary isolation.
Pressure must be placed on Israel to halt these unlawful measures in compliance with the Geneva Conventions and international law. The international community, including Australia, Aotearoa New Zealand, and Pacific Countries, have a legal and moral responsibility to intervene urgently and hold the Israeli government is fully and directly responsible for the suffering caused by its strategy of collective punishment and violations of international law committed against Palestinian prisoners.
For more information, please contact the General Delegation of Palestine to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific: ph. (02) 6286 9193.