PNN/ Bethlehem/

As Palestinians mark the International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian Prisoners on 17 April, 6,500 Palestinians lie behind Israeli bars, including 350 children and 62 women.

According to the Commission for Prisoners and Ex-Prisoner Affairs, roughly 6,500 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli prisons and detention centers, including 350 children, 62 women (8 of whom are female child prisoners), 500 administrative detainees, 1,800 prisoners who require medical care (700 of whom suffer from serious and chronic conditions), 6 parliamentarians, and 18 journalists.

Since Israeli began its military occupation of the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip in 1967, more than 800,000 Palestinians have been abducted and imprisoned by Israel.  This figure represents 20% of the total Palestinian population and 40% of the Palestinian male population. It also includes 10,000 women imprisoned since 1967 and more than 200 Palestinians have died in Israeli prisons as a result of torture and lack of medical care. Furthermore, 8,000 Palestinian children have been arrested since 2000.

Under international law and conventions, including the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War (the Third Geneva Convention), the Fourth Geneva Convention and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1966, Israel is legally bound to exercise its powers for the benefit of the occupied area and its people.



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