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Israel’s Policy of Torture

177 Palestinian Prisoners Killed Since 1967

International Press Center of the PNA
March 29, 2005

GAZA, Palestine, March 29, 2005 (IPC+WAFA)—Figures released by the Prisoner and Ex-Prisoner Ministry showed that 177 Palestinian detainees were killed inside Israeli jails since 1967.

The Planning and Statistics Department of the Ministry said, in a statistical report, 69 Palestinian prisoners (39%) were killed due to being subjected to severe torture whilst 37 prisoners (20.9%) died due to the lack of medical health care.

The report also revealed that 71 prisoners (40.1%) were willfully killed after the arrest – in cold blooded murder. 57 of these prisoners (32.2%) were from the southern provinces and 120 (67.8%) from the northern provinces and other localities.

Among the killed prisoners, 72 (40.7%) were slain in the period between 1967 until the flare up of the al Aqsa Intifada I on 8 Dec 1987, including 39 who were tortured to death, 17 died due to the lack of necessary medication and 19 were willfully killed after arrest.

Mr. Abed Al Nasser Ferwana, director of the Planning and Statistics Department of the Ministry said that 42 of the killed prisoners were killed within the first Intifada, making up 23.7% of the total number of Palestinian prisoners killed. Among them 23 had been tortured to death, 11 died due to a lack of heath care, and 9 were willfully killed. He added that 18 of those prisoners killed were from the Gaza Strip while the 24 others were from the west bank and other areas.

The report documented that the number of the prisoners killed tangibly decreased during the period between the middle of 1994 until 28 Sep, 2000, as the number of the prisoners killed inside Israeli jails was 8, making up only 4.5% of the total. During this time, 2 died due to the withholding of medical treatment, and 6 were tormented to death. No records of willful killing after arrest were registered.

Following the eruption of the current Intifada, the number of Palestinian prisoners killed inside the Israeli jails soared. Between 29 Sep 2000 and 28 March 2005, the number reached 55, making up 31.1% of the total 177 prisoners killed, including 10 in the Gaza Strip and 45 in the west bank and Jerusalem, among them were 26 Palestinian prisoners killed during the second year of Al Aqsa Intifada, the report revealed.

The report also explained that the prisoners are being killed at a higher rate now than during the first Intifada. It pointed out that the percentage killed in the six-year first Intifada was 23.7% (42 martyrs), while the percentage during nearly four years of Al Aqsa Intifada has already reached 55 (31.1%).

The number of those prisoners that were killed due to severe torture in the first Intifada was larger during the Al Aqsa Intifada. The number of the prisoners killed willfully and liquidated was also rose, reaching 47.

The report explained that the rise in the number of prisoners killed was due mainly to the state-sponsored policy of assassination practiced by Israel throughout Al Aqsa Intifada.

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Additional Resources

The Gaza Strip: A humanitarian implosion

Back to a Routine of Torture – Torture and Ill-treatment of Palestinian Detainees during Arrest, Detention and Interrogation – September 2001 - April 2003

Amnesty International – Israeli Settlers Wage Campaign of Intimidation

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Fact Sheet – Palestinian Prisoners in Israeli Detention

B’Tselem Fact Sheet – Administrative Detention


Defence for Children International, Palestine

Addameer Prisoners’ Support and Human Rights Association

Palestinian Prisoners’ Society

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