Fifteen Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons are suffering from cancer and are at risk of dying, the Hossam Association of Palestinian Prisoners and Ex-Prisoners has said.
The organization said in a statement, according to Ma'an, that they believed the number was in fact higher, as the 15 include only those who have been diagnosed with cancer, but many others have tumors whose malignancy is not known because Israeli prison authorities have limited their access to tests.
The organization blamed Israeli authorities for contributing to an environment in which Palestinian prisoners faced a heightened risk of cancer due to high levels of radiation inside prison cells.
The group said that Israeli authorities set up devices to jam satellite and telephone signals near rooms where Palestinians are being held. They also pointed to the use of radiation in security scanners that prisoners are forced to go through during frequent searches and examinations.
The statement also said that a number of prisons are located near the Dimona nuclear reactor as well as toxic waste dumps in the Negev Desert, another factor which it said contributed to the high incidence of cancer.
The association said that Israel is violating international and humanitarian laws by keeping these prisoners and other sick prisoners in detention as their lives are in danger and they do not pose any danger or threat to Israel.
It claimed in the statement that a total of 1,500 Palestinian prisoners are suffering from some kind of illness, out of a total of around 5,500 Palestinians being currently held in Israeli jails.
The association called upon the international community to uphold its legal and humanitarian responsibilities towards the prisoners and their rights.
The association listed a number of the most pressing cases it was aware of inside Israeli prisons.
The case of Mutasem Radad from Tulkarem is one of the most critical among these, it said, as he has reached an advanced stage of cancer and has undergone several surgeries. They also highlighted Yusri al-Masri from the Gaza Strip who suffers from a malignant tumor in his thyroid and underwent surgery to remove the tumor in December 2013. more