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Palestinian child with leukemia medically neglected in Israeli prison

Feb. 13, 2017 4:50 P.M. (Updated: March 7, 2017 9:09 P.M.)
(File)
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) -- The medical condition of 15-year-old Ahmad al-Khadour has seriously deteriorated while being held in Israel's Ofer detention center, according to a lawyer for the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, Luay Ukka.

Ukka said Sunday that Ahmad, who is from the town of Beituniya in the central occupied West Bank, has been suffering from leukemia for the past three years and has also suffered from a stroke, feet problems, intense dizziness, and muscle contractions in his fingers.

The lawyer stressed that Israel Prison Service (IPS) authorities have not been providing adequate care for the child.

Ukka added that al-Khadour was detained on Jan. 2 after Israeli forces violently assaulted him, beating him with the butt of their rifles.

The justification and circumstances of the boy's detention remained unclear.

Separately, the Jerusalem Committee for Families of Prisoners said Sunday that IPS recently moved 28-year-old Azmi al-Daqaq to Hadassah hospital after a serious deterioration in his health.

The committee said that al-Daqaq was detained in Jan. 20 over an alleged stabbing attempt. He was sentenced to three months in administrative detention -- Israel's widely condemned policy of internment without trial or charge -- which the committee said was proof Israeli courts failed to substantiate any charges against him.

Rights groups have widely condemned Israel for its medical negligence of Palestinians in its prisons, which Addameer has called a "deliberate policy of neglect."

In August, a number of Palestinian rights organizations established a committee to follow the cases of Palestinians in poor health being held in Israeli prisons.

In addition to deliberate medical negligence, Addameer has cited the environment in Israeli prisons, which is reportedly far below international standards, the tendency for the Israeli prison administration to ignore their responsibility for the well-being of Palestinian prisoners, and the overcrowding in Israeli prisons as all factors that adversely impact the health of Palestinians in Israeli custody.

Meanwhile the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners' Affairs reported last October that the “overwhelming majority” of Palestinian minors held in Israel’s Megiddo and Ofer prisons are tortured during their detention and interrogation.

Prisoners’ rights group Addameer has reported that 6,500 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli prison, according to their January statistics.
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