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Hamas renews pledge to work for release of all Palestinians being held in Israeli jails

Female Palestinian detainee Anhar al-Deek (L) and her family (Photo by Wafa news agency)

The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, has renewed its pledge to work strenuously for the release of Palestinians who are being kept behind bars in Israeli detention centers across the occupied territories and are subjected to various forms of torture and mistreatment.

Speaking at a sit-in held outside the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) headquarters in Gaza City, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said his group “will explore all avenues and will try tirelessly to secure the freedom of all Palestinian prisoners.”

“Pressure must be exerted on the Israeli Occupation in order to end the suffering of our female prisoners, especially Anhar ad-Deek – a Palestinian mother in Israeli detention who is on her ninth month of pregnancy, and Israa Riyad Jamil Ja’abees,” he added.

Barhoum also lambasted the international community for its failure to take an effective measure against the Israeli regime’s growing mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners, stressing the need for an urgent move to save ad-Deek.

Separately, Palestinian Minister of Women's Affairs Amal Hamad has called on the international community to force the Tel Aviv regime into releasing the 26-year-old pregnant Palestinian woman.

Hamad said in a statement that ad-Deek, a resident of Kafr Ni'ma town located 13 kilometers (8 miles) northwest of Ramallah, is expected to have a cesarean delivery while in custody.

She described the Palestinian women’s detention as a blatant violation of international conventions and principles, particularly the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law and the Geneva Conventions on the Protection of Civilians and Prisoners of War.

Hamad also described the arrest of ad-Deek as a war crime, pointing out that she was detained on March 8 while she was three months pregnant, and put behind bars without any consideration for her health.

More than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently held in some 17 Israeli jails, with dozens of them serving multiple life sentences.

Critics say Israel uses the policy of administrative detention, which is a form of imprisonment in which the individual is never tried and can be held indefinitely, to silence the voices of Palestinians but lacks any concrete evidence that could be presented in an open, military court.

Palestinians say administrative detention is a whole other level of injustice.

Rights groups describe Israel’s use of administrative detention as a “bankrupt tactic” and have long called on Israel to bring its use to an end.

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