RNA - “According to the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI), about 1,200 complaints of torture during Israeli interrogations have been filed since 2001. All the cases were closed without a single indictment,” said the Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, which advocates the rights of Palestinian prisoners.
It added that torture methods used by the guards include stress positions, beatings resulting in severe wounds, sleep deprivation, emotional blackmail, threats of torture against family members and the transfer of detainees to secret prisons.
The rights group said the Tel Aviv regime allows the use of torture in ‘exceptional cases’ and exempts those involved in torture from criminal liability.
Immediate recognition and awareness of such human rights violations have encountered difficult hurdles in the face of Israel’s tactics of depriving legal counsel to tortured detainees during interrogation, the group said.
It notes that given that Palestinians, without exception, are all deemed a purported threat to Israel, there are no parameters excluding detainees from torture.
Rather than having their rights protected, Palestinians in Israeli jails risk additional violations while the perpetrators of such violence are immune from prosecution, by means of the same security narrative that allows for the torture of Palestinians, Addameer said.
The rights group then quoted a statement by Nils Melzer, the UN special rapporteur on torture, who drew a parallel between the US presence in Guantanamo and Israel’s colonial entrenchment in Palestine.
Both Israel and the United States are setting an example of impunity when it comes to the torture of detainees, Melzer stated.
Since 1967, 73 Palestinian prisoners have reportedly been killed by torture in Israeli jails.
Torture survivors have no recourse to justice, as it is Israel who decides whether an investigation should be opened.
Additionally, the international community continues to ignore such flagrant violations of human rights that amount to war crimes.
More than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently held in some 17 Israeli jails, dozens of whom are serving multiple life sentences.
Over 500 detainees are under the so-called administrative detention, which is a sort of imprisonment without trial or charge that allows Israel to incarcerate Palestinians for up to six months, extendable an infinite number of times.
Some prisoners have been held in administrative detention for up to 11 years without any charges brought against them.
Palestinian detainees have continuously resorted to open-ended hunger strikes in an attempt to express their outrage.