Dozens gathered outside Megiddo Prison in northern Israel on Saturday, January 30, to protest the incarceration of the 17-year-old Palestinian teenager, Amal Nakhleh, the Communist Hebrew-language website, Zo Haderech, reported. Nahkleh, a resident of the Jalazone refugee camp in the West Bank, had been arrested in the past and was recently sentenced to six months of administrative detention by a military court of the Israeli occupation without charges being made or formally tried. Among the protestors outside the Megiddo Prison on Saturday were Hadash MKs Aida Touma-Sliman and Yousef Jabareen and former Hadash MK Mohammed Barakeh, the head of the Higher Arab Monitoring Committee.
The European Union has also expressed its “long-standing concerns about the extensive use by Israel of administrative detention without formal charges,” and called on Israel “to respect its obligations under the Geneva Conventions. “We echo the UN Human Rights Office in the occupied Palestinian territory in calling for the immediate release of 17-year old Amal Nakhleh,” the EU said in a statement, continuing, “Amal was sentenced by an Israeli military court for six months of administrative detention without charges or trial.”
Israeli occupation forces arrested Nakhleh at his home in Ramallah in the central West Bank, on January 21 and brought to prison. The youth suffers from an autoimmune disease that requires regular medication and medical attention.
At Megiddo Prison numerous cases have been reported of Palestinian prisoners infected with the COVID-19 virus. Throughout Israel, at least 200 Palestinian prisoners have become ill with the coronavirus since the start of the year, said the Palestinian Detainees and Ex-Detainees’ Commission.
Hasan Abed Rabbo told the official Voice of Palestine radio that the overall number of positive corona cases among Palestinian prisoners in Israel has reached 340, mainly in the Rimon and the Naqab prisons. Abed Rabbo said that five of the infected prisoners have been admitted to hospitals due to the deterioration of their health due to the virus. Families of the prisoners are concerned about their sons, said Abed Rabbo, particularly because they are unable to visit them as a result of the corona restrictions.