Occupation forces’ special units and prison guards have stormed prisons holding Palestinian political prisoners 16 times since the beginning of August 2014, reported Riad al-Ashqar of the Palestinian Prisoners Center for Studies. Raids took place 5 times in Negev (Ketziot) prison, 4 times in Gilboa, Ofer 3 times, Ramon twice, and once each in Ashkelon, Eshel and Megiddo; these raids involve ransacking prisoners’ room under the guise of inspections.
These operations are sudden invasions involving dozens of heavily armed guards, frequently using tear gas, and accompanied by sniffer dogs. In various prisons, prisoners’ personal property has been destroyed; electrical appliances have been removed, and some rooms have become isolation cells. Raiding units shout profanity at and insult prisoners, have torn up tile floors, drilled large holes in walls, torn apart mattresses and blankets and confiscated prisoners’ property. Ashqar said that prisoners had lost thousands of shekels of belongings during this campaign of raids.
In addition, Palestinian prisoner Mohammed Fouad of Jenin was beaten by a raiding unit, injuring his right ear and permanently damaging his hearing in that ear.
In addition, Fouad Khuffash of the Ahrar Centre for Human Rights reported that the occupation prison system is attempting to repeal all of the achievements of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Movement since the 1970s and 1980s; all TV channels except three (two in Hebrew and Al-Arabiya) have been removed; family visits are denied; recreation denied. Khuffash noted that these suppressive actions are enacted selectively against prisoners from specific factions in particular Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in an attempt to break up the fabric of unity of the Palestinian prisoners’ movement.
Prisoners in Megiddo prison have been forbidden from receiving clothing from family members; they often have only the clothing they had when they were arrested, and this edict is causing significant hardship.