September 25, 2016

New statement from occupation prisons: Palestinian political prisoners plan to escalate protest

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The following statement was released on 29 November by the Prison Branch of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and reflects the organizing of prisoners from all Palestinian political parties inside Israeli occupation prisons, including the organizing of PFLP prisoners. The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat is distributing the statement below and will participate in international solidarity actions with the striking prisoners as news and actions develop:

At the time when the occupation is continuing its onslaught against our people everywhere, escalating the attack and violations and racist hatred in everywhere, this attack is becoming more violent and ugly against the prisoners’ movement. Here, there are not even the barest elements of parity in the balance of power, which falls decisively in favor of the enemy, as conditions become more difficult and cruel and the occupier escalates its policies that aim to undermine our determination, will and revolutionary humanity through a series of measures impacting all aspects of prisoners’ lives inside the occupation prisons. These policies include denial of family visits, limitations and prohibitions on deposits of money to the prison “canteen” (commissary) accounts, eliminating almost all television stations except two Hebrew channels and 1 Arabic channel, as well as arbitrary transfer and a recent increased escalation of solitary confinement and isolation. This comes on top of restrictions on movement within prison sections and continuation of the deliberate policy of medical neglect, denying sick prisoners visits with specialist physicians under various pretexts, and the violent night raids and invasions of prisoners rooms under the pretext of inspection and searches for contraband. These so-called searches aim to uproot all stability in the lives of prisoners and make it clear to prisoners that they are being targeted on a daily basis. All of these raids only emphasize the steadfastness of the prisoners and their insistence on their will for life and freedom, which is truly what these raids are attempting to confiscate.

In light of the escalation of these attacks, backed by the political decision of the right-wing extremist Zionist government, and after all efforts have failed to end these attacks, which have been escalating since 12 June 2014, the prisoners’ movement has held a series of meetings in various prisons about the current situation, which have issued several specific demands and which have decided to begin the implementation of a program of steps of protest with increasing escalation and rejection of the policy and procedures of the prison administration, in order to pressure the prison authority to implement these demands. These protest steps will begin on 1 December 2014 and will continue until the desired goals are accomplished.

Prisoners’ specific demands:

  • Restore the situation to what it was prior to 15 June 2014
  • Cancel all denials of family visits, restore the removed television channels, cancel all prohibitions on canteen deposits, and restore conditions of life in general. Resume visits to prisoners from the Gaza Strip with equality with prisoners from the West Bank
  • End all of the recent punitive practices, including lengthy delays between family visits, prohibitions on assembly and movement within sections, the escalation of isolation and solitary confinement, frequent transfers by “Bosta” and address all matters relating to this issue, which inflicts significant suffering on prisoners while being transferred between prisons or taken to court
  • Improve the treatment of prisoners suffering from medical conditions and provide the necessary medications to prisoners suffering from disease
  • End administrative detention without charge or trial

Announced schedule of protests to achieve these demands:

1 December 2014, Monday – Sending a message to the director of the prison to discuss this issue
2 December 2014, Tuesday – One-day hunger strike in all prisons
9 December 2014, Tuesday – One-day hunger strike in all prisons
10 December 2014, Wednesday – Afternoon protest in the prisons
16 December 2014, Tuesday – One day hunger strike in all prisons
18 December 2014, Thursday – Boycotting the prison administration and striking by sections
23 December 2014, Tuesday – One day hunger strike in all prisons
25 December 2014, Thursday – Boycotting the prison administration and striking and protesting in sections
26 December 2014, Friday – Strikes and protests in all prisons, announcing the beginning of mass civil disobedience

This program will escalate in protest steps in order to build up pressure on the prison administration to support our struggle and achieve our just demands. The jailer, sooner or later, will be subject to the will and the victory of the prisoners!

Glory to the martyrs and victory to the revolution.

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine branch in Israeli jails