The Israeli Prison Administration (IPA) threatened to bar all detainees in all 28 Israeli prisons and detention facilities from receiving visitors after soldiers stationed at two facilities claimed to have been attacked by family members who had come to visit detainees.The IPA held a meeting headed by Yacob Ghanot, and issued a warning that all visitations would be stopped if the attacks continued.
The IPA officially barred visitations in Ofer and Nafha prisons after an Israeli female soldier in Nafha was allegedly stabbed by a woman who was visiting her brother last Monday. According to the IPA, a Palestinian youth also tried to stab a soldier in front of Ofer prison while he was attempting to visit his brother.
Several Palestinian Human Rights Organizations challenged the Israeli procedures against the detainees and their families, saying that soldiers are forcing the families to undergo naked body searches and other types of humiliation while they are attempting to visit their detained family members.
The organizations considered these procedures as collective punishment against the detainees and their families.
Palestinian Legislator Issa Qaraqe', in charge of the detainees committee of the Palestinian Legislative Council, stated that the Israeli soldiers are violating the rights of the detainees and their families, by forcing the family members of the detainees to undergo naked body searches and other humiliating procedures.
Qaraqe' added that the families are also forced to wait for several hours in the sun before they are allowed to visit, and in many cases they are sent back home without being allowed to visit their detained family members.
There have also been a number of reported cases of Israeli soldiers clubbing and abusing family members waiting outside the prisons, and has also taken some of them prisoner.
Also, Qaraqe' stated that the Israeli authorities started implementing a ban on many family members, saying simply that they are “barred for security reasons”, with no further explanation, in order to further deny visitation rights to parents and other family members of detainees.
Qaraqe' demanded the United Nations to push Israel to end the violations against the detainees and their families, especially since these violations are in direct contravention of international law and legitimacy.