Thirty-five female Palestinian prisoners are currently behind Israeli bars, a local NGO has announced ahead of International Women’s Day, noting that eleven of the prisoners are mothers.
In a statement carried by Palestine’s official Wafa news agency, the Palestinian Prisoner Society (PPS) said 26 of the female prisoners had been sentenced to varying prison terms, the longest belonging to two prisoners, Shurooq Dwayyat and Shatila Abu Ayyad, who are each serving a jail sentence of 16 years.
Three of the prisoners are being held without charges or trial under the so-called administrative detention, the rights NGO added.
The Israeli administrative detention is a form of incarceration without trial or charge that allows the Israeli authorities to detain Palestinians for up to six months. The period, however, can be extended an infinite number of times.
Israel has been widely condemned by international human rights organizations for its extensive use of administrative detention.
The regime employs this measure extensively to hold thousands of Palestinians for virtually unlimited periods of time, while the prisoners cannot defend themselves against the undisclosed allegations.
Back in October 2020, Michael Lynk, the UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories, said the administrative detention is a penal system that is “ripe for abuse.”
“Administrative detention, in contrast, allows a state to arrest and detain a person without charges, without a trial, without knowing the evidence against her or him, and without a fair judicial review,” Lynk said. “It is a penal system that is ripe for abuse and maltreatment.”
According to Israeli Prison Services (IPS) data obtained by B’Tselem, an Israeli rights group, there were 376 Palestinians being held in administrative detention by Israel at the end of September 2020. The IPS has not updated the figure since then.
According to IPS data, at the end of September 2020, there were also 4,184 Palestinian security detainees and prisoners in Israeli jails, including 157 minors.
Israeli forces frequently detain Palestinians from various parts of the occupied territories. Early this month, the regime’s troops arrested at least 22 Palestinians in raids against their families’ houses as well as in clashes.