Global lawyers’ association says: Free Walid Daqqah and all Palestinian prisoners

The International Association of Democratic Lawyers adopted a resolution at its Council meeting on 2 July 2023, calling for freedom for Palestinian prisoner, intellectual and freedom fighter Walid Daqqah, suffering from myelofibrosis, a rare bone marrow cancer, repeatedly denied release and subjected to systematic Israeli medical neglect.

Read the resolution full text below:

Resolution of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers: Free Walid Daqqah

Whereas, Palestinian prisoner, thinker and writer Walid Daqqah has been jailed in Israeli prison since 25 March 1986 and is currently suffering from a rare bone marrow cancer, myelofibrosis, and

Whereas, Walid Daqqah has been imprisoned for 37 years and his medical condition is rapidly deteriorating, requiring a bone marrow transplant and other specialized medical treatment that has been repeatedly delayed or denied, or is entirely unavailable inside Israeli prisons, and

Whereas, Walid Daqqah’s sentence ended on 24 March 2023 and he is currently being held on an additional two-year sentence for allegedly smuggling a mobile phone into the prison, and

Whereas, Despite his medical condition and the severe deterioration of his health, Daqqah’s appeals for early release have been denied, most recently on 26 July 2023, with claims that his release is barred by the “Prevention of Terrorism” Act, despite the fact that his sentence expired, and

Whereas, Daqqah has been repeatedly transferred back and forth between civilian hospitals and the Ramleh prison clinic, dubbed a “slaughterhouse” by the Palestinian prisoners, and

Whereas, since December 2022, he was mistakenly diagnosed with leukemia; suffered a stroke after medical neglect and mistreatment; was denied treatment for the stroke until his fellow prisoners demanded it; developed pneumonia; had a portion of his lung surgically removed; and has developed multiple infections, and

Whereas, Daqqah has been repeatedly denied release in prisoner exchanges with other Palestinian political prisoners four times, in 1994, 2008, 2011 and 2014, because he is a Palestinian citizen of Israel, yet he has also been denied the rights and privileges granted to Jewish Israeli prisoners, such as conjugal visits and early release, reflecting the apartheid and settler colonial nature of the Israeli prison system, and

Whereas, Walid Daqqah is one of the preeminent intellectuals of the Palestinian resistance movement and has been subjected to solitary confinement in retaliation for his writing and publication, and is the author of multiple books, including: Testimonies of Resistance: The Battle of Jenin Camp 2002 (2004); Consciousness Molded or the Re-identification of Torture (2010); The Story of the Forgotten in Parallel Time (2011); The Oil’s Secret Tale (2018); The Sword’s Secret Tale (2021); The Spirit’s Secret Tale/ The Martyrs Return to Ramallah (2022), as well as unpublished manuscripts, paintings, poetry, lyrics and autobiography, and

Whereas, Daqqah  married the activist, journalist and translator Sana’ Salamah on 10 August, 1999 in Ashkelon Prison; after they were denied conjugal visits through multiple appeals, Sana’ gave birth to their child Milad Daqqah on 3 March 2020 through artificial insemination of “liberated semen” smuggled from the prison, and Daqqah’s family has urged the broadest international action for his release;

Therefore, be it resolved, that the International Association of Democratic Lawyers calls for the immediate release of Walid Daqqah for him to receive treatment without restriction in a hospital where the necessary conditions are met for the success of the medical procedures he needs, in the presence of his family,

And be it further resolved, that the IADL calls for the urgent  formation of a medical team from his family, prisoners’ institutions, and human rights organizations to visit Walid, in order to break the medical blackout about his condition, and for the immediate and unrestricted access of Walid Daqqah’s family to their loved one,

And be it further resolved, that the IADL will join in all international, Arab and Palestinian efforts to free Walid Daqqah and his fellow 5,000 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails, and to expose and hold Israel accountable for its ongoing medical negligence against Palestinian prisoners, as part and parcel of its unlawful regime of colonial occupation throughout occupied Palestine, including referring this breach of international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention to the International Criminal Court for prosecution of Israeli officials,

And be it finally resolved, that the IADL will follow up on the case of Walid Daqqah and his fellow Palestinian prisoners by advocating for the and to the EU-Israel Association agreement and other free trade agreements with the Israel state, an end to U.S. and other states’ aid to Israel, and exclusion of Israeli police, prison authorities, “Border Police” and other institutions from research programs and joint initiatives, and further urges the U.N. Secretary General and all U.N. committees and agencies to take all available procedures and steps to bring to an end Israeli apartheid, war crimes and crimes against humanity in occupied Palestine, including the exclusion of the Israeli state from participation in the U.N. General Assembly as well as other committees and bodies.

Adopted by the IADL Council

2 July 2023

The IADL Council also adopted a resolution calling for freedom for Palestine Action prisoners in British jails and divestment from Israeli arms manufacturer Elbit Systems. Founded in 1946, the IADL is accredited to UNESCO and ECOSOC at the United Nations, and it has sections and members in 50 countries and territories.

Since IADL’s founding in 1946 in Paris, IADL members have participated in the struggles that have made the violation of human rights of groups and individuals and threats to international peace and security, legal issues under international law. From its inception, IADL members throughout the globe have protested racism, colonialism, and economic and political injustice wherever they interfere with legal and human rights, often at the cost of these jurists’ personal safety and economic well being. IADL members in the United States, Canada, France, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Italy, Venezuela, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom, Austria, the Philippines, Japan, Spain, Portugal, Togo, South Africa, Bangladesh, Nigeria, and India, among others, participated in the Council meeting.