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Medical Neglect in Israeli Prisons

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Medical Negligence in Israeli Prisons

Gross mistreatment and malpractice are commonplace.

by Stephen Lendman

Palestinians in Israeli prisons are grievously abused. Conditions resemble gulag hell. Treatment is deplorable. Fundamental human rights are violated. 

Geneva's Common Article 3 requires "humane treatment for all persons in enemy hands, specifically prohibit(ing) murder, mutilation, torture, cruel, humiliating and degrading treatment (and) unfair trial(s)."

Fourth Geneva's Article 56 states:

"To the fullest extent of the means available to it, the Occupying Power has the duty of ensuring and maintaining, with the cooperation of national and local authorities, the medical and hospital establishments and services, public health and hygiene in the occupied territory, with particular reference to the adoption and application of the prophylactic and preventive measures necessary to combat the spread of contagious diseases and epidemics. Medical personnel of all categories shall be allowed to carry out their duties."

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Article 91 affirms that "Every place of internment shall have an adequate infirmary, under the direction of a qualified doctor, where internees may have the attention they require, as well as an appropriate diet. Isolation wards shall be set aside for cases of contagious or mental diseases.

Article 92 states "Medical inspections of internees shall be made at least once a month. Their purpose shall be, in particular, to supervise the general state of health, nutrition and cleanliness of internees, and to detect contagious diseases, especially tuberculosis, malaria, and venereal diseases. Such inspections shall include, in particular, the checking of weight of each internee and, at least once a year, radioscopic examination."

On January 22, Addameer headlined "Medical Neglect Leads to Death of Ashraf Abu Dhra." In May 2006, he was sentenced to six and half years in prison. Recently he was released.

His crime was wanting to live free on his own land in his own country. He was one of thousands of Palestinian political prisoners. Israel treats them ruthlessly.

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Predating his incarceration, Ashraf had numerous medical problems. They included muscular dystrophy. In 2008, he became disabled.

In detention, he contracted several illnesses. They included lung failure, immunodeficiency, and a brain virus. Deplorable medical neglect killed him.

According to Addameer, he "suffered a slow and painful death that was exasperated by neglect and the prison service's refusal to provide court-ordered treatment."

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I was born in 1934, am a retired, progressive small businessman concerned about all the major national and world issues, committed to speak out and write about them.

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