Female detainees in Telmond Israeli prison reported that they intend to organize a series of steps in protest to a decision of an Israeli court to separate detainee Manal Ghanim, from Tulkarem, from her child Nour who was born while she was in custody, and move her to Al Jalama prison.

Ghanim appealed international humanitarian organizations to intervene for her release, in consideration that her child, Nour, will be two years old in two months, and thus will be taken out of detention in accordance with Israeli law.

The Tulkarem office of the Palestinian Prisoners Society reported that the detainees in Telmond warned that they will carry protests, that could include a continuous hunger strike, against the decision of the prison administration to separate detainee Manal from her child; The decision will be effective on May 10.

The detainees appealed the humanitarian organizations to interfere in order to keep he child in his mother’s care until she is released.  

Manal Naji Mahmoud Ghanim, 29 years old, mother of four, from Tulkarem Refugee Camp, was arrested in April 2003 by the Israeli army and sentenced in a military court in the occupied West Bank to 50 months in prison.

She was arrested when pregnant and gave birth to her child while she was in prison; she is suffering from Thalassemia (blood disease) and is not provided with the needed medical treatment and medication. Her child , Nour, is not receiving the needed food especially after the prison administration barred the entry of special infant food for her child especially since the food provided to the detainees in of a bad quality and insufficient.

Nour, 18 months old, was operated at the prison hospital after suffering Hernia, his mother was allowed to accompany him during the operation; soldiers who accompanied her insisted to handcuff her during the operation of her child but she strongly objected and demanded to remain “hands-free” while standing besides her son.

The child was released from hospital on the same day of his operation after the administration refused to allow his mother to remain with him.

Unlike other children, Nour did not practice his right to play  and walk freely especially since the detainees are allowed out of their rooms only three hours per day.

Following repeated attacks carried by the soldiers against the detainees in their room, Nour suffered several problems especially after the soldiers hit the detainees with batons and sprayed them with gas. He was sick for three weeks and lost his ability to speak.

The child wakes up screaming at night, and always cries when the soldiers enter the room to count the detainees every morning.

Detainee Manal said that soldiers bar her child from touching and playing with his brother and two sisters during visitation time.

Manal’s children, Majed, 7, Niveen, 9, and Ehad, 11, said that they always wait to see their mother and brother during the visitation time but the soldiers refuse to allow them have any direct body contact with them.

Manal, the detainees, and human rights organizations demands that she should be released along with her child who does not know anybody outside the prison compound, even his own direct family.

“I want to be with him, take care off him, and provide him with everything he needs,” Ghanim said, “I am really under tremendous psychological pressures; I have to be freed with my baby.”