On the anniversary of the death of a Christian detainee who died in an Israeli prison twenty years ago, Abdul-Nasser Farawna, head of the Census Department at the Palestinian Ministry of Detainees, stated that Christians and Muslims in Palestine are brothers and partners in pain, hope and struggle. Farawna added that both Christians and Muslims are suffering under the occupation; all are friends, colleagues and neighbors who struggle together against the occupation.

In a press release which was issued on Friday marking the twentieth anniversary of the death of detainee Khadir Al Tarazi, a Christian detainee who died in Israeli detention centers, Farawna stated that Christians and Muslims both suffer under the same aggression and attacks against them and their holy sites.

“Christians are our partners in steadfastness, and struggle”, he added, “They have been always subjected to the same aggression the Israeli occupation is subjecting the Muslims to”.

He added that Christians in Palestine are part of the national struggle and many of them led political factions and led the revolution such as the late leader Dr. George Habash, Wadee’ Haddad, Kamal Nasser, Nayef Hawatma in addition to several national and political intellectuals such as Edward  Sa’id, and Azmi Bishara in addition to the late poet Tawfiq Zayyad.

Farawna added that several Christian figures are members of the Executive Committee of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) the Legislative Council and the consecutive governments.   

Khader Al Tarazy died in an Israeli prison on February 9, 1988. He was extremely tortured by Israeli interrogators and the prison administration in Ansar 2 prison, on the Gaza Coast, refused to receive him due to his deteriorating medical condition. He died at the Soroka Israeli Hospital in Be’er Shiva.

At least 20 detainees died in Israeli prisons due to torture, while the total number of detainees who died in Israeli prisons since 1967 arrived to 192. Dozens of additional detainees died of bad health conditions, resulting from torture, shortly after they were released from prison.