Two Palestinian prisoners’ advocacy groups have announced that a Palestinian prisoner, who was suffering from cancer and had lately lapsed into a deep coma, has died because of medical complications caused by deliberate medical negligence in Israeli detention.
The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) and the Palestinian Commission of Detainees’ and Ex-Detainees’ Affairs said in a joint statement that 50-year-old Nasser Abu Hmaid was pronounced dead on Tuesday morning at the Israeli Shamir Medical Center, formerly known as Assaf Harofeh Medical Center and located 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) southeast of Tel Aviv.
They said Abu Hmaid was transferred from the Ramla Prison Hospital to the medical center on Monday afternoon after his health condition severely deteriorated.
Earlier, the Palestinian Commission of Detainees’ and Ex-Detainees’ Affairs said the cancer-stricken Palestinian prisoner was in a fairly critical condition and that he had slipped into a deep coma. Doctors were giving him large doses of painkillers.
Abu Hmeid had been battling death for several months in Ramla Prison Hospital. His health had been deteriorating amid a wide spread of cancerous cells throughout his body, with complete damage to his left lung.
He hailed from the al-Amari refugee camp in the occupied central West Bank city of Ramallah. He has been incarcerated since 2002 and was sentenced to life imprisonment after an Israeli court found him guilty of participating in attacks during the Second Palestinian Intifada (uprising).
Abu Hmaid was diagnosed with lung cancer in August 2021 after Israeli authorities delayed the provision of medical examinations and treatment, according to prisoner groups.
His family had appealed to all concerned international bodies to take urgent and effective action to save the life of their son.
Hamas: Abu Hmaid fought until his last breath
The Gaza-based Hamas resistance movement mourned the death of the cancer-stricken Palestinian prisoner.
Hazem Qassem, a spokesman for the group, said in a statement on Tuesday that Abu Hmaid fought the Israeli occupation until his last breath, and represented the entire Palestinian nation.
He denounced the Palestinian inmate’s death as a major crime committed by the Tel Aviv regime against Palestinian prisoners and Palestinians in general, stressing that the misdeed must be met with a mass uprising aimed at forcing Israel to abandon its criminal policy of medical negligence.
Qassem pointed out that the policy of medical negligence reveals the extent of the Israel Prison Service’s terrorism against Palestinian detainees, adding that Hamas has placed the issue of prisoners atop its priorities.
There are reportedly more than 7,000 Palestinians incarcerated in Israeli jails. Human rights organizations say Israel violates all the rights and freedoms granted to prisoners by the Fourth Geneva Convention.
Israeli jail authorities keep Palestinian prisoners under deplorable conditions without proper hygienic standards. Palestinian inmates have also been subject to systematic torture, harassment, and repression.