Samidoun demands accountability for Israeli medical neglect in the death of Palestinian prisoner Yasser Hamdouna

yasser-hamdounehPalestinian prisoner Yasser Diab Hamdouna, 41, died on Sunday morning, 25 September, in Israeli Ramon prison, apparently as a result of a stroke; he had reported medical problems for years and had gone on hunger strike against isolation in Nafha prison, reported fellow prisoners. In 2003, he has been beaten by prison guards and suffered significant injuries to his head and left ear; he was in the Ramle prison clinic on multiple occasions. Asra Voice reported that several months ago, he finally received a heart catheterization procedure and has remained in a delicate health situation.

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network condemns the ongoing medical neglect and mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners by the Israeli occupation prisons and demands the immediate release of the sick prisoners in Israeli jails.

yaser-hamdouneh-motherHamdouna, imprisoned since 19 June 2003 on charges of involvement in the armed resistance to Israeli occupation and involvement in the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the armed wing of Fateh, was from Yabad in Jenin area. He was serving a life sentence in Israeli jails and was transfered to Soroka hospital after his death.

Palestinian prisoners from all political factions announced a three day hunger strike in mourning for Hamdouna; the prisoners will also boycott recreation, visits and legal meetings during those three days.

208 Palestinian prisoners have died in Israeli jails since 1967 and eight more shortly after their release; 55 of these deaths are directly atteributable to Israeli medical neglect or mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners. Palestinian prisoners are routinely denied appropriate health care and surgeries, denied necessary tests, or given only painkillers rather than relevant treatment for serious health issues. There are over 700 sick Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, including 150 seriously ill prisoners suffering from cancer, heart disease and other illnesses.

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network affirms the responsibility of the Israeli occupation state for the medical neglect, mistreatment and death of Yasser Hamdouna and dozens of fellow Palestinian prisoners. We express our full solidarity with the prisoners’ movement hunger strike and demand international accountability for the death of Hamdouna and the ongoing threats to Palestinian prisoners’ lives due to medical neglect. We also demand the immediate release of sick Palestinian prisoners to receive appropriate treatment and immediate medical assistance.