Israeli prison guard tower (archive image)

On 24 March 2020, the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) letters to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and to the Palestinian diplomatic community, Palestine News Network reported.

The letters were urgent appeals with regards to the deteriorating conditions of Palestinian prisoners and detainees in Israeli jails, in light of the continuing spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Palestinian human rights organizations urgently requested that the health and safety of Palestinian prisoners be particularly minors, the chronically ill, and those held under administrative detention, in contravention of international law.

Addameer association was informed last week that a Palestinian detainee under interrogation may have been exposed to COVID-19, transmitted by contact with an Israeli Security Agency interrogator who tested positive for the coronavirus. The detainee and several others have now been placed in quarantine, yet their conditions are unknown to us.

Our growing concern for Palestinian prisoners during the ongoing pandemic grows out of the systematic and routine medical negligence inside Israeli detention and interrogation centers.

Furthermore, the bleak conditions of Israeli prisons, including overcrowding, unsanitary conditions, and poor nutrition, turn them into dangerous breeding grounds for COVID-19.

~ Addameer, PNN

Image: Alray