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Prisoners’ Rights Group Calls on UN to Stop Mass Arrests

AUG. 23, 2011 – Oslo, Norway

The United Nations and all other human rights supporters must speak out against Israel’s campaign of mass arrests now being waged in the West Bank, says UFree, the European Network to Support the Rights of Palestinian Prisoners.

The raids by the Israeli military escalated on Aug. 21, at the same time that attacks have stepped up in the Gaza Strip. To date, more than 150 Palestinians residents of the West Bank have been arrested, particularly in Hebron after military vehicles stormed the city. In addition to detaining a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Israeli soldiers raided the house of the Mufti of Bethlehem in the al-Dheisheh refugee camp, wounding three Palestinians and arresting two of them, after refusing to allow the Palestinian Red Crescent to care for their injuries. The raids are the most extensive in eight years, and have swept up children, the elderly and lawmakers alike.

Mohammed Hamdan, chairman of UFree, noted in a written statement issued today that Israel’s latest aggression comes just days before the Eid al-Fitr, a three-day Muslim holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. “This campaign of arrests in the West Bank and bombings in Gaza seems designed to wreak destruction not only on the people, but on our very culture.”

UFree, its head office based in Oslo, Norway, promotes and defends the rights of Palestinian prisoners and detainees. More than 6,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently being held in Israeli jails, including about 300 children and more than 30 women living in often inhumane conditions, including torture and lack of medical care.


UFree is an independent European-wide human rights network; set up to defend the rights of Palestinian prisoners and detainees.

" Without freedom, no one really has a name " Milton Acorda

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