[Ppnews] Graves for the Living: Palestinian Political Prisoners in Solitary Confinement

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Wed Jul 6 15:14:37 EDT 2011



Graves for the Living: Palestinian Political Prisoners in Solitary Confinement

Posted on 
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/>04/07/2011 
by 
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/author/avoicefrompalestine/>reham 
alhelsi

http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/

Yesterday, 03.07.2011, around 7000 Palestinian 
prisoners held captives in Israeli dungeons went 
on a one-day hunger strike to protest the 
repressive measures of the Israeli prison 
administration. According to the Palestinian 
ministry of prisoners’ spokesperson: “Palestinian 
prisoners in all Israeli jails were the target of 
an unprecedented terrorizing campaign of 
repression, isolation, and transfer from one 
prison to another over the past few weeks. He 
said that the campaign peaked with the beating of 
the oldest serving prisoner Nael al-Barghouthi, 
which prisoners condemned as a violation of all 
red lines, along with the isolation of many 
prisoners serving high 
sentences.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn1>[1] 
The spokesman added that the strike was a warning 
action that might lead to further forms of 
protest. Some weeks ago, I came across a letter 
written by Palestinian political prisoner Hasan 
Salameh and published on various Palestinian 
sites. Salameh is locked up in Israeli dungeons 
since 1996 and is in solitary confinement since 7 
years. In this letter, Salameh says: If I could 
buy your support for me and for the other 
prisoners with all that I possess, I swear I 
would not fall short. With these harsh words, 
Slameh addressed us. He addresses us from the 
isolation cell that separates him from his loved 
ones, that separates him from his friends and 
comrades, from the rest of the world. He 
addresses us from the grave in which he is buried 
alive. With these harsh words, he addresses us; 
we who go to work every day, who go to school and 
universities, who go to the market, who visit 
friends and family. He addresses us while he and 
thousands others are locked up inside Zionist 
dungeons. He addresses us while his life and that 
of thousands others are withering in the 
darkness, while they suffer in silence. Hasan 
Salameh, addresses us from his isolation cell and 
asks of us only one thing: that we remember him 
and the thousands of Palestinians held captives 
in Israeli prisons. He asks of us only one thing: 
not to forget those buried alive in Israeli 
dungeons. Hassan Salameh, from Khan Younis, is 
one among 50 Palestinian political prisoners 
locked up in isolation cells by the Zionist 
entity. Latest prisoner to be isolated is 54 
years old Na’il Al-Barghouthi, who has been 
locked up in Israeli dungeons since 34 years, 
making him the oldest serving prisoner in the 
world. On 27.06.2011, Israeli prison jailors 
raided Section 5 of the Remon prison, caused 
havoc and destroyed the prisoners’ possessions. 
When Na’il refused to be strip searched, he was 
sent to an isolation cell. He had initially 
agreed to be strip-searched, but only in the WC. 
He was handcuffed and asked to take off his 
shirt, which he was unable to do because of being 
handcuffed, so the jailors beat brutally him. 
Upon hearing his screams, fellow detainee Hilal 
Jradat started shouting from his nearby cell. The 
jailors then locked up Na’il and Hilal in one 
cell and beat them brutally. In addition to being 
isolated as a punishment, Na’il was fined 500 NIS.

The Zionist entity, in yet another blatant 
violation of international law, uses isolation or 
solitary confinement as a method to undermine and 
break the will of Palestinian political 
prisoners. Currently, at least 50 Palestinian 
political prisoners are locked up in isolation 
cells, some of whom are in permanent isolation 
since their detention like Abbas As-Sayyed who 
has been in isolation since his detention in 
2002. Isolation is used as a punishment for both 
the prisoners and their families who have to live 
daily with the fact that their child, parent, 
sibling or partner is held like an animal in a 
cage, in a matchbox. Being locked up in isolation 
cells constitutes not only physical and 
physiological torture but also a death sentence, 
an extra-judicial execution, where Palestinian 
political prisoners are left to die a slow, a 
painful and a silent death. Knowing that 
isolation kills the spirit, some political 
prisoners are transferred to isolation cells 
immediately after the end of their interrogation, 
others are punished with isolation for protesting 
Israeli inhumane treatment, for demanding their 
rights, for being political leaders or for no 
reason other than persecuting and harassing these 
prisoners. Justifications provided range from 
“causing a threat”, “being dangerous” to having 
“influence” on other prisoners. Female prisoner 
Latifa Abu Thra’ saw the Israeli special forces 
for “Suppression of prisoners” beat prisoner 
Sanabil Breek. When Abu Thra’ told them to stop 
beating Breek, the special forces started beating 
her. She defended herself and hit one of them 
back and was punished with isolation for 4 months 
in Ramleh prison and a further 2 months of 
isolation in Hasharon in a tiny cell with cameras 
observing her 24 hours. Palestinian female 
detainee Nili As-Safadi was locked up in an 
isolation cell for more than 45 days in Israeli 
detention center Bet Hatikva. The cell was dark, 
she didn’t get any proper food and wasn’t allowed 
to change her clothes for the length of her 
isolation. During the interrogation she was 
subjected to all forms of physical and 
psychological torture to force her into 
confessing. When she didn’t confess, her entire 
family and the family of her husband were 
detained. Later she was transferred to Hasharon 
prison in a journey that lasted 12 hours with her 
hands and legs bound and she wasn’t given any food or water.

There are two types of isolation: Individual 
isolation where one prisoner is locked up alone 
in a cell, and dual isolation where two prisoners 
share a small cell. Every 6 months or every year, 
depending on the type of their isolation, 
isolated prisoner go through mock trials, 
theatrical games for the sake of the media, which 
always end with the extension of the prisoner’s 
isolation without reason, and thus Palestinian 
prisoners who are placed in isolation remain so 
for many years. The Palestinian Prisoners’ Club 
confirms the existence of “a phony court where 
the prisoner is taken every six months and in the 
event of their being two prisoners they are taken 
to it once a year. This court obeys the Israeli 
intelligence court orders “Al-Shabak” and the 
prisons administration “Al-Shabas”, and often 
requires the extension of the period that the 
prisoner is in isolation without giving reasons 
for it, and it also lacks the bare images and 
elements of a fair 
trial.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn2>[2] 
Several Palestinian prisoners were subjected to 
solitary confinement more than once. This applies 
also to Palestinian female prisoners such as 
Latifa Abu Thra’, Abeer Amro, Abeer Odeh, Amnah 
Muna, Wafa’ Albis and Mariam Tarabeen. According 
to the latest reports, there are at least 50 
Palestinian prisoners in isolation, including 
female prisoners Mariam At-Tarabin and Ahlam 
At-Tamimi. Ahlam At-Tamimi was isolated because 
as a punishment for writing the names of all 
Palestinian female prisoners on a piece of paper 
for her lawyer during a visit. Among Palestinian 
political prisoners, there are at least 12 
prisoners who have spent over five years in isolation such as:
- Owaida Kallab: 16 years in isolation.
- Abdel Nasser Al-Halisy and Tayseer Samody: 15 years in isolation.
- Mu’taz Hijazy, Mahmoud Issa and Sameh Al-Shobaki: 10 years in isolation.
- Abbas As-Sayyed: 9 years in isolation.
- Jamal Abu Al-Haija, Ahmed Al-Mughraby, Hasan 
Salameh and Abdallah Al-Barghouthi: 7 years in isolation.
- Ahmad Shukri: 6 years in isolation.

In isolation, many Palestinian prisoners are 
subjected to all forms of physical and 
psychological suffering. Isolation cells have an 
area of only 1.8m x 2.7m, including the WC. These 
cells, unfit for animals, are damp and badly 
ventilated. They have an iron door that is fitted 
with an opening for passing food to the prisoner 
and one small window close to the ceiling causing 
high humidity. Neither fresh air nor natural 
light enter the isolation cells. Prisoners are 
expected to live, cook, sleep, shower and excrete 
in these cells. There is almost no room for 
movement and little space for personal items. 
Inside isolation cells, Palestinian prisoners are 
subjected to continuous harassment, provocation 
and violence, repeated inspections, naked 
searches and night raids during which they are 
beaten and their personal possessions confiscated 
or destroyed. They are only allowed one hour per 
day out of the isolation cell into the prison 
yard, known as fora, and are sometimes even 
denied this. This one hour exercise depends on 
the mood of the Israeli jailors, and Palestinian 
prisoners aren’t allowed to change the time of 
the fora or complain about it; for example a 
prisoner might be taken to a fora when it is 
raining heavily in the yard or when it is too 
hot, sometimes prisoners are awakened at dawn to 
go on the fora and if they decline because it’s 
too early, the fora is cancelled for that day. 
Some Palestinian prisoners are isolated in cells 
close to Israeli criminals who keep shouting and 
banging at the walls and doors, preventing the 
prisoner from sleeping. In one interview, 
Palestinian political prisoner Abbas As-Sayid 
said that if Israeli jails are the graves for the 
living, then isolation is like abusing the bodies 
of the martyrs, adding that isolation is 
considered one of the harshest policies of 
punishment against political prisoners, leaving 
them to live in complete isolation in a cell to 
which no sun enters and that lacks ventilation 
and the minimum requirements. He added that “Far 
away from the world, the forms of torture 
increase and the types of suffering are many, for 
the isolated lives 23 hours alone in his cell, 
and in case he was lucky and received the 
opportunity to get a fora, he spends it while his 
hands are bound and his feet shackled, and the 
isolated prisoner is deprived of family visits 
and meeting his fellow prisoners and is treated 
more 
harshly.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn3>[3]

Isolated prisoners are further punished through 
depriving them of family visitation and contact 
with other Palestinian prisoners. They have no 
contact with the outside world, except with their 
jailors and torturers. Family members, who make 
the long and hard trip to the Israeli prisons, 
are often turned back without being allowed to 
see their loved ones. Also, those who have family 
members locked up as well inside Israeli jails 
are not allowed to see them. Ibrahim Hamid, 45 
yrs old, from Silwad, was sent to isolation 
immediately after interrogation in 2006, and 
since then his family hasn’t been allowed to 
visit him. His wife was imprisoned as well and 
later deported to Jordan and when his brother in 
law died he wasn’t even allowed to call his wife 
to convey his condolences. His trial is still 
underway. Although Jamal Abu Al-Haija’s wife is 
withering with cancer, he isn’t allowed to see 
her and isn’t allowed to see any of his children, 
3 of whom are detained by Israel as well. Also, 
lawyers of isolated prisoners are often prevented 
from visiting their clients under various 
pretexts such as that the prisoner has been moved 
elsewhere. Another very harsh form of punishing 
isolated prisoners is sending them to the snouk. 
The snouk is a small room of 180cm x150 cm with 
one narrow harsh mattress, making the cell not 
fit for sleeping, let alone walking as a form of 
exercise. The only facilities in the snouk are 2 
buckets: one for drinking and one for urinating, 
and prisoners are allowed excretion only once a 
day, so they don’t eat much all day. Prisoners 
isolated in the snouk are not allowed to have a 
pillow or keep a watch, a radio or newspapers so 
they doesn’t know the time or the date, and 
aren’t allowed to buy any of the necessities they 
need, including food, from the prison shop known 
as the canteen. Mohammed Barash, who is blind and 
“suffers from the amputation of his left leg and 
other diseases in his body 
 was taken to the 
snooker and tied by his hands and foot to the 
bed, and during the night he suffered from 
suffocation and could not get up because of the 
restrictions, he had no choice but to scream to 
get the attention of the 
nurse.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn4>[4]

Isolated prisoners are extra-judicially executed; 
they are destroyed both spiritually and bodily 
through isolation, torture, harassment, medical 
negligence and malnutrition. Since 1967, at least 
198 Palestinian prisoners were killed while in 
detention, 70 as a result of torture, 71 killed 
in cold blood after being arrested, 50 as a 
result of medical negligence and 7 being shot 
dead inside prisons by Israeli jailors. Latest 
Palestinian prisoner to be murdered by Israeli 
interrogators is 30 years old Raid Abu Hammad who 
was in isolation. Ra’id Abu Hammad from 
Il-Izarriyeh (Bethany) was murdered on 16.4.2010 
in the Israeli Beersheva prison. He had been in 
Israeli detention for five years and was in 
isolation for 18 months at the time of his 
murder. Abu Hammad was placed in solitary 
confinement in Eshel for causing damage to a TV 
set in the cell. The damage was not deliberate 
and Abu Hammad’s family applied to the prison 
authority to replace the ruined TV set so he be 
released from isolation, but the Israeli prison 
authority refused. According to the Palestinian 
Prisoner Society, “Abu Hammad was hit by Israeli 
interrogators on the center spine and the back of 
his neck, and died of his wounds in the cell. 
Forensic examination revealed that Abu Hammad was 
healthy and did not suffer from any health 
condition. He was also an athlete and in a strong 
body shape. The examination also revealed that 
Abu Hammad was tortured during interrogation and 
was struck on the center of his spine causing 
damage to the spinal canal in addition to being 
violently hit on the back of the 
head.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn5>[5]. 
Often Palestinian prisoners take action to 
protest their baseless punishments, the ill 
treatment and isolation through measures such as 
hunger strikes. They are promised release from 
isolation to be isolated again after they end 
their hunger strike. Isolated prisoner Haitham 
Salhiyyeh is currently on his 13th day of 
hunger-strike. He went on strike to protest the 
Israeli prison authority’s policy of medical 
negligence. Despite his medical condition, 
Haitham does not get the needed medical 
treatment, in addition to being isolated. Mousa 
Dudeen went on a hunger strike for 25 days, his 
health deteriorated and he was promised an end to 
isolation if he ends his strike. He did that but 
was sent to isolation again after some time. 
Abbas As-Sayyid went several times on hunger 
strikes to protest his isolation and the inhumane 
treatment of Palestinian prisoners on the hand of 
Israeli jailors. On one such protest actions, in 
May, 2011, he went on hunger strike for 23 days, 
during which no lawyer was allowed to visit him. 
He was transferred to hospital after his health 
deteriorated, nonetheless he went on with the 
hunger strike. On 11.3.02003 six Palestinian 
female prisoners were punished by the Israeli 
prison authority with solitary confinement 
because they demanded the prison authority 
provide them with hot water for bathing during 
the cold season. Isolated prisoners are also 
often attacked and brutally beaten and bear 
traces of the beating on their bodies, such as 
Mu’taz Hijazi who is being isolated for the 10th 
years and was once beaten so brutally that he 
lost consciousness and had to be admitted to the 
intensive care unit at hospital.

Like all Palestinian political prisoners in 
Israeli captivity, isolated prisoners suffer from 
the wide-spread deliberate medical negligence. 
Most of the time, those suffering from severe 
pain, and even malicious diseases are treated 
with mere pain killers. Torture, brutal beatings 
combines with the high humidity and poor 
ventilation, the unhealthy, insufficient food and 
lack of exercise cause isolated prisoners all 
sort of bodily ailments and medical problems 
starting from problems of the respiratory to the 
nervous systems. Because of being held hostage in 
a small cell with a tiny window, many prisoners 
develop poor vision after spending 23 hours daily 
in the dark. Since 1967, at least 50 Palestinian 
prisoners were killed while in detention as a 
result of medical negligence, the latest victim 
being 37 years old Mohammad Abdeen, a father of 5 
from occupied Jerusalem who was killed on 
10.06.2010 while in Israeli detention. Abdeen was 
transferred from one Israeli prison to another, 
where he was interrogated and tortured. He was 
placed in solitary confinement in Eshel prison, 
then moved to Ramon prison and then to Majiddo 
prison, then to Mi’bar section of Ramleh prison, 
which is a detention center where prisoners are 
kept before their court sessions in Ofer military 
court. Abdeen had a court session on 13.06.2010, 
but he never made it to the court because he was 
murdered 3 days earlier. In addition to being 
tortured during interrogation, Abdeen suffered 
from bad health conditions and was denied medical 
treatment. His wife, who visited him in jail on 
06.06.2010, only a few days before his death, 
noticed his deteriorating health and said she saw 
his hands shaking, his limbs could barely 
function, he could hardly talk, his body was weak 
and that he was in great pain. She is reported 
saying: “Mohammad was another person
 his face 
was pale and it was obvious that he was very 
tired, and a female soldier used to come in the 
morning and the evening and give him a medicine 
which he didn’t know what it was or what 
for”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn6>[6]. 
Only some 2 weeks earlier, on 24.05.2010, his 
wife found him in excellent health. This drastic 
change in his health condition, the sudden pain 
and suffering that rushed his death only 
strengthens what a number of Palestinian experts 
on Palestinian prisoner’s affairs say about 
Israeli prison authorities using Palestinian 
detainees for medical experiments and as test 
objects for new Israeli medicines. When his body 
was later released for burial, the family noticed 
signs of beating on his neck and face. Another 
example is that of 65 year old Jum’ah Ismail 
Mousa from occupied Jerusalem who died on 
23.12.2008 after collapsing at the Ramleh prison. 
Mousa, a father of 8 who had been in Israeli 
detention since 1993, suffered from a heart 
disease, high blood pressure and diabetes and was 
denied proper and much needed medical treatment. 
Palestinian female prisoner Latifa Abu Thra’ was 
isolated more than once after she was “announced” 
in 2007by the Israeli prison authority as 
“dangerous to the security of the state of 
Israel”. She suffers from fibers in the uterus 
and was supposed to conduct medical tests at Tel 
Hashomer hospital, but because her hands and feet 
were chained, the nurse was unable to conduct the 
tests. After the accompanying policewomen refused 
to unchain her arms, Abu Thra’ unchained herself, 
upon which she was attacked by the prison guards 
and “announced” as “dangerous”. She was further 
punished with solitary confinement for two months 
and ten days in Ramleh prison, after which she 
was returned to Hasharon prison and isolated 
there. She didn’t get any medical treatment. 
Palestinian female detainees are also blackmailed 
by the Israeli prison authority, for example they 
demanded that Amnah Muna, who is need of an 
operation, sign a document in which she refuses 
medical treatment in return for not being 
isolated. Israeli interrogators used the stomach 
injury inflicted on Hasan Salameh upon his arrest 
to torture and pressure him. Despite his medical 
condition, he is being directly targeted by the 
prison administration which keeps moving him from 
one cell to another within the isolation sections.

On 20.06.2011, it was reported that Israeli 
prison administration at Asqalan have held 
Palestinian political prisoner Atef Wreidat, 45 
from Ad-Dahriyyeh, in solitary confinement. 
Wreidat is sick and suffers from heart problems, 
high blood pressure and diabetes, and desperately 
needs an operation. He went on a hunger strike 
and refused to take his medication to protest the 
continuous delay of the heart surgery he 
desperately needs, the inhumane treatment and 
arbitrary measures against him by Israeli prison 
administration and “the prison’s policy of 
medical neglect and his transfer to Ashkelon 
prison, a move that would be adverse to his 
health 
condition.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn7>[7] 
According to Wreidat’s lawyer, “imprisoning 
Wreidat in solitary confinement, while he is 
going on a continuous hunger strike and refusing 
to take medicine is a death sentence.” Adding 
that the “the prison’s administration held 
Wreidat in solitary confinement, which is a very 
narrow unsanitary poorly ventilated cell, which 
has a foul odor, putting his life in real danger; 
he cannot stand up and suffers from dehydration, 
cracks in the tongue and lips as well as from 
vomiting.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn8>[8] 
He was transferred to Ramleh prison hospital 
after his health deteriorated as a result of the 
hunger-strike. On 27.06.2011, Atef ended his 
hunger strike when the Israeli prison 
administration promised to end his isolation and 
transfer him to another prison, only to resume it 
2 days later after being tricked by the Israeli 
prison administration. “..instead of transferring 
him to another prison, as promised, the Israeli 
prison administration imposed sanctions on him 
after he ended his hunger strike, which included 
a 4-month ban on family visits, a 2-year ban from 
pursuing education in prison, a 1-month ban from 
using canteen services and more than $500 fine. 
It also said it will keep him in Asqalan prison 
for a month and place him in solitary confinement 
for three 
weeks.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn9>[9] 
As a result of the conditions prevailing in 
isolation cells, a number of isolated prisoners 
are in need of urgent medical treatment but do 
not receive it. A report of the Palestinian 
Prisoners’ Club 
mentions:<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn10>[10]
- Hasan Salameh: suffers from an injury in the 
stomach inflicted on him upon his arrest, suffers from hemorrhoids.
- Mohammed Jaber Abdoh: suffers from urinary tract problems.
- Mu’taz Hijazy: suffers from the brutal assault 
on him, because of which he was transferred to 
the intensive care unit. – Yehya As-Sinwar: in need of medical treatment.
- Owaida Kallab: suffers from mental and physical 
illnesses, and general weakness.
- Jihad Yaghmoor: suffers from severe pneumonia 
and from cases of suffocation at night.
- Abdel Nasser Al-Halisy: suffers from a difficult mental disorder.
- Hisham Ash-Sharabati: suffers from pains in the muscles, neck and leg.
- Jamal Abu Al-Hayja: suffers from a medical condition and bad vision.
- Atef Wreidat: suffers from heart problems, high blood pressure and diabetes.
- Haitham Salhiyyeh: suffers from severe 
headache, chest pain, ear pain, numbness in his left hand and leg.
- Mansour Ash-Shahateet: suffers from a heart disease, headaches, amnesia.

Being held captive under these inhumane 
conditions, cut off the rest of the world, the 
health of prisoners deteriorates slowly and many 
suffer from depression. According to many 
studies, solitary confinement causes severe 
mental damage to prisoners that include paranoia, 
hallucination, depression, sleep disorder, 
anxiety and cognitive disorder. Prisoners with 
psychological problems have no chance at all of 
getting any medical assistance. One example is 
prisoner Abdel Naser Al-Helsi from occupied 
Jerusalem who is imprisoned for life. “Abdel 
Nasser suffers from critical psychic problems as 
a result of the 21 years imprisonment of which 8 
years were in solitary confinement. The tough 
situation experienced in this section besides the 
continuous beating and torture collaborated to 
undermine his psychic 
condition.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn11>[11] 
Another example is Owaida Kallab from the 
occupied and besieged Gaza Strip, also imprisoned 
for life and has already spent 20 years in jail. 
Kallab lost his memory after years of isolation: 
“The many years of isolated confinement has 
caused him such severe psychic disorders that he 
refuses to see his family during visitation time 
in addition to many other physical diseases. He 
is also so physically weak that he does not have 
the strength to make himself a cup of tea. 
Previously, the Palestinian prisoners in the 
other sections used to cook his meals but the 
ruthless jail administration barred passing food 
or any stuff between the prisoners in different 
sections despite Owaida’s extremely bad condition 
and the prisoners’ repeated demands to treat him 
with 
mercy.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn12>[12] 
Faiz Al-Khour is another prisoner who suffers 
from severe mental disorder as a result of his 
isolation and Mansour Ash-Shahateet suffers from 
amnesia caused by his long isolation.

Similar to many Palestinian prisoners locked up 
in Israeli dungeons, those in isolation suffer 
from malnutrition and what little they get is 
insufficient and often inedible. Israeli jailors 
also time the supply of water and food in a 
manner that no more food or water is provided 
after 19:00. Prisoners who can afford it have to 
buy what they need from the prison canteen for 
very high prices, the rest have to do with the 
inedible, out-dated, often poisonous food they 
get causing many malnutrition and diseases of the 
digestive system. Other prisoners aren’t allowed 
to buy vegetables for isolated prisoners and 
isolated prisoners who don’t have enough money 
aren’t allowed to buy their needs using the 
Palestinian prisoner’s general account. In 
addition to that, if a prisoner is transferred 
directly to isolation after interrogation, he 
will have no time to buy what he needs or get his 
possessions from the regular cell. Israeli prison 
authority prohibits exchanging supplies between 
isolated prisoners and “regular” prisoners and 
prohibits the exchange of items or necessities 
between isolated prisoners. They aren’t allowed 
to borrow stuff from other isolated prisoners 
such as blankets and cooking utensils. In one of 
several examples, “the jailers’ inhumanity 
exceeded all limits when they reacted to Malssa’s 
attempt to pass a prayer rug to Hamed by accusing 
him of defying the regulations. He was charged 
with contraband and was sent to the punishment 
areas (called Snouk) for nine days in addition to 
a penalty of 200 
shekel.”<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftn13>[13]

Some weeks ago, I came across a letter written by 
Palestinian political prisoner Hasan Salameh. 
Salameh is locked up in Israeli dungeons since 
1996 and is in solitary confinement since 7 
years. In this letter, Salameh addresses all of us (a rough translation):

You who live in that large world we hear about but don’t see


My place
  a small world in which we live the 
bitterness of detention and isolation
 in this 
confined space 
 which becomes more and more 
narrow
 how much we like to remember the time 
that has passed, which might be the most 
beautiful image that we still carry in our hearts and in our minds 


How I wish the return of that beautiful time when 
we were young and innocent and knew no hate 
 our 
respect for the elders was something sacred, like 
a verse from the Qur’an 
 I remember when we used 
to come back home from school and the search 
campaign for tidy books and copybooks would begin 
and I was always the most orderly 
How I wish to 
return back to my home, my streets and my city 
 
we miss everything
 I’m not only isolated, but 
also deprived of living with any friend from my 
area with whom to talk about Gaza or Khan Younis
 
or about childhood memories 
 I look older, and 
my beard has grown grey but I live like I was a 
child .. I yearn for and I miss everything

O loved ones, they want to isolate my memory
 to 
remove me out of the human world and put me in 
the world of the dead so after so many years they 
bring some of us to a new memory that has nothing 
to do with human beings
 This letter of mine is 
my only means to maintain myself 
 moments of 
happiness in this isolation are when I wrote a 
letter or receive one from outside
 I sit like a 
little child on my bed and crush myself in a 
corner and read a letter that came from the world 
of the living, the world of humans
 how did it 
arrive?? by what means 
 it does not matter .. 
the important thing is that it arrived
 and once 
I receive it I feel I still belong to you, I feel 
I’m still alive, I read every word and every 
letter as if I am drinking the elixir of life 
that brings me back to life and lifts me from 
amongst the dead 
 so are your letters and 
hearing your voice
 I Look for ways to help keep 
me alive and breathing and by God, and by God you 
are the oxygen through which I breathe
 if I 
receive it I breath and thrive and if it was cut 
off me I turn back into a corpse among corpses 
walking like in movies bout dead people who move 
by particular factors but without a spirit and 
without soul, only a body walking and moving
 
Nine continuous years during which I moved 
between one grave to another 
 I stay in the 
grave 23 hours and leave for one hour to a larger 
grave
 But I’m still strong, thanks to God, and I 
have a strong will and all that I am going 
through [in isolation on hands of jailors] is to 
destroy this will using the latest psychological 
findings
 in front of me and beside me are 
friends who were so beautiful and have become mad 
and have become in a pitiful state
 and believe 
the strength and resolution I am in is thanks to 
the grace of God
 never do I have credit for it
 
only He stands with me
 even you whom I love are 
busy with your concerns and problems to stay 
connected with me even for moments that are to 
you only few minutes each week, but are to me 
life, the whole world, the challenge, the Oxygen 
.. When one of you gets bored you go any place or 
visit a childhood friend to talk to so what do 
you say to someone who is forced to speak to 
himself and to live with memories he so much 
yearns for
 I held my pen so to talk to you and I 
found myself like someone who is hungry or is 
thirsty to say what’s on his mind
 and my problem 
is that I do not cry and I hold back my tear so 
it bleeds blood in my heart 
I have started 
enjoying the bleeding of the heart and I feel 
that the tears of the heart sterilize my wounds 
and at the same time I leave them to increase my 
pain
 because I don’t want to forget the pains
 I 
don’t want to forget my sufferings
. I want it to 
hurt every minute 
 it’s a volcano which I want 
to erupt every day so I never forget who I am and 
who they are
 so I feel I am still a human being and I am still alive


How much time will it cost one of you if you 
speak for a few minutes every week or every two 
weeks or wrote a letter and sent it with a lawyer 
or through the post, knowing that it will 
strengthen and help an isolated prisoner to whom this letter is a new life

If I could buy your support for me and for the 
other prisoners with all that I possess, I swear I would not fall short

These are but words uttered by my pain over this time
To the people of the other world
 the one we hear of but don’t live in
 From the bottom of my heart I wish you luck and 
I will love you even if you forgot me, for my 
consolation is that there is a God who is 
generous and will not forget me 
. God is very 
beautiful and I live according to this beauty in 
everything in my life even in my isolation and 
despite my suffering and the difficulties of life and its catastrophes.

According to latest reports, currently there are 
around 6000 Palestinian political prisoners 
locked up in Israeli dungeons, including 37 
women, 245 children and 180 administrative 
detainees. Among those there are at least 50 
prisoners who are locked up in isolation cells, 
some of whom are in permanent isolation since 
their detention. Following is a preliminary list 
of isolated Palestinian political prisoners 
(incomplete, collected from several sources):
- Owaida Kallab: from Gaza, in isolation since 16 years.
- Abdel Nasser Al-Halisy: from Jerusalem, in isolation since 15 years.
- Tayseer Samody: in isolation since 15 years.
- Sameh Al-Shobaki: in isolation since 10 years.
- Mahmoud Issa: from Anata, in isolation since 10 years.
- Mu’taz Hijazi: from Jerusalem, in isolation since 10 years.
- Abbas As-Sayyed: from Tulkarim, in isolation since 9 years.
- Hasan Salameh: from Khan Younis, in isolation since 7 years.
- Ahmad Al-Mughrabi: from Dheisheh RC, in isolation since 7 years.
- Abdallah Al-Barghouthi: from Beit Rima, in isolation since 7 years.
- Jamal Abu Al-Haija: from Jenin RC, in isolation since 7 years.
- Ahmad Shukri: from Jerusalem, in isolation since 6 years.
- Ibrahim Hamid: from Silwad, in isolation since 5 years.
- Hisham Ash-Sharabati: in isolation since 5 years.
- Mohammad Jubran Khalil: in isolation since 5 years.
- Salih Dar Mousa: from Beit Liqia, in isolation since 5 years.
- Mohammad Jamal Al Natsha: from Hebron, in isolation since 5 years.
- Mohammad Jaber Abdo: from Kufr Ne’ma, in isolation since 3 years.
- Mhawish N’eimat: in isolation since 2008.
- Ahmad Saadat: from Ramallah, in isolation since 2009.
- Atwah Al-Amour: in isolation since 2009.
- Iyad Abu Hasna: in isolation since 2009.
- Mariam At-Tarabin: in isolation since 2010.
- Ahid Al-Ghalmeh: in isolation since 2010.
- Yahya As-Sinwar: from Khan Younis, isolated 
several times (12 years in total) and is in isolation since 2010.
- Thabit Mirdawi: in isolation since 2010.
- Eid Misleh: in isolation since 2010.
- Salah Al-Awawdah: in isolation since 2010.
- Muhannad Shreim: in isolation since 2010.
- Raed Mohammad Darabyeh: in isolation since 2010.
- Ubadah Bilal: in isolation since 28.5.11.
- Mahmoud ‘Irman: in isolation since 28.5.11.
- Zaher Jabarin: from Salfit, has been held in 
isolation several times and is currently isolated.
- Haitham Salhiyyeh: has been held in isolation 
several times and is currently isolated.
- Mansour Ash-Shahateet: from Hebron.
- Osama Al Einaboosi: from Tobas.
- Walid Aqel: from Gaza, isolated several times 
(15 years in total) and is currently in isolation.
- Ahlam At-Tamimi.
- Jihad Yaghmour: from Jerusalem.
- Raed Al Sheikh: from Jabalia RC.
- Atef Wreidat: from Ad-Dahriyyeh.
- Raid Abu Maghseeb: from Deir Al-Balah.
- Kifah Al-Hattab.
- Murad Abu Rukab: from Ramallah.
- Dirar Abu Sisi: from Gaza.
- Mahmoud Al-‘Ardah: from Arrabah.
- Bajis Nakhlah.

Source:
www.palestinebehindbars.org
www.alasra.ps
www.ahrar-pal.info
www.paltoday.ps/
www.mandela-palestine.org
www.sabiroon.org
www.ppsmo.org
www.imemc.org
www.english.wafa.ps
www.palestine-info.co.uk

Footnotes:
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref1>[1] 
http://tinyurl.com/5so7dgk
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref2>[2] 
http://www.ppsmo.org/
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref3>[3] 
http://tinyurl.com/6copzza
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref4>[4] 
www.ppsmo.org
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref5>[5] 
www.imemc.org/article/58498
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref6>[6] 
www.sabiroon.org/news/specialNewsDetails.php?code=3707&category=19
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref7>[7] 
http://tinyurl.com/6k434cg
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref8>[8] 
http://english.wafa.ps/index.php?action=detail&id=16495
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref9>[9] 
http://english.wafa.ps/index.php?action=detail&id=16580
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref10>[10] 
www.ppsmo.org
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref11>[11] 
http://www.ahrar-pal.info/ar/index.php?act=Show&id=752
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref12>[12] 
ibid
<http://avoicefrompalestine.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/graves-for-the-living-palestinian-political-prisoners-in-solitary-confinement/#_ftnref13>[13] 
ibid

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