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PLO: 800,000 Palestinians detained since 1967 occupation
Published Thursday 17/04/2014 (updated) 19/04/2014 11:21
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Over 5,000 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli jails.
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli military forces have detained over 800,000 Palestinians since the 1967 occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, the PLO said Thursday.

"For Palestinians, having loved ones in prison is not the exception: it is something which has affected every Palestinian family," PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat said in a statement marking Prisoners Day.

"In the context of prolonged occupation, Israel -- a foreign military power -- has unlawfully imposed itself on the land of another people and has oppressed millions, in many varying ways. The plight of the prisoners reflects the plight of the Palestinian people as a whole."

Over 800,000 Palestinians have been detained since 1967, with 5,224 currently being held in Israeli detention centers, according to the PLO.

There have been a total of 50 Palestinian parliamentarians in Israeli jails at one time or another, Erekat said, representing over one third of the Palestinian parliament.

Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouthi was the first member of the Palestinian parliament to be detained after Israeli forces raided Ramallah on April 15, 2002, and seized the Fatah representative in an arrest raid.

Eleven remain incarcerated at the present time, including Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Ahmed Saadat.

An international campaign to free Barghouthi and all Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons, that includes the signatures of the Robben Island Declaration by Nobel Peace Laureates, church leaders, and human rights figures, has since garnered widespread support.

"Israel has criminalized all forms of resistance, both armed and peaceful, and even political and civic engagement. The Palestinian leadership has chosen to resist through diplomatic and peaceful means, in order to achieve the Palestinian people's inalienable rights, as enshrined in international law," Erekat added.

Earlier this month, Israel reneged on an agreement to release a final group of pre-Oslo Palestinian prisoners, throwing ongoing peace talks into crisis.

Israel originally committed to freeing all Palestinians detained after signing the Oslo Accords in 1993, and again in 1999 as part of the Sharm el-Sheikh agreement.

"Israel must choose between the pursuit of occupation and the pursuit of peace. Each settlement, each arrest, each violation, each refusal to abide by its commitments and obligations, shows that Israel is heading in the wrong direction," the PLO negotiator added.

"But history teaches us that justice prevails. We follow the example of Nelson Mandela and the people of South Africa. No oppression, no denial of rights can continue forever."

In 2013, some 3,000 Palestinian prisoners refused breakfast as part of a one-day hunger strike to mark Prisoners Day.
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1 ) Reality & / Truth
17/04/2014 15:33
"In the context of the situation":
-1- the State of Israel is a NOT a "foreign military power", but
instead an ancient indigenous part of the Land's history, and
-2- the land does NOT belong to "another (Palestinian) people", but
instead it is meerly claimed by another people, and
-3- the 800,000 were detained, in the last 47 years, because more than
some 8,000,000 engaged in violence and terrorism !!!

2 ) AKeenReader / UK
17/04/2014 15:41
A good case to bring against the Israeli govt at the ICC. No need to waste any more time on negotiations becuase Israel is using delaying tactics and containing the problem as mentioned byh bouncer Liberman. I hope that Palestinian leadership is aware of this and take action soon. Extending the talks will only delay matters. As the saying goes which apply to the Israeli govts "A Leopard can't change its spot"

3 ) @ Reader-2 / Reality again
17/04/2014 18:20
The ICC will Not look into past decades, before the Palestinian Authority signed UN treaties, and even if it would, detention of violent, terrorizing individuals is an internationally accepted practice, so:
-1- ISRAEL SHOULD EXPECT NO PROBLEMS from the ICC, BUT given that
-2- PALESTINIANS are still firing bullets, mortars, and rockets
(as you say "a Leopard can't change its spot") at Israeli civilians/villages,
they SHOULD EXPECT TO BE FOUND GUILTY OF WAR CRIMES & terrorism.

4 ) Colin Wright / USA
17/04/2014 21:37
Sociologically, it's kind of interesting. A government that has to punish this large a proportion of the population it rules obviously lacks any legitimacy at all. This in turn creates a basis for arguing that it is not a government at all, but simply a criminal activity. That leads to the conclusion that the appropriate response is not to negotiate with it, but to decide how to eradicate it.

5 ) Colin Wright / USA
17/04/2014 21:53
To Reality #1: Your arguments fails in that neither (1), nor (2), nor (3) are true.

6 ) Sherri Munnerlyn / US
18/04/2014 14:52
800, 000 Zionist war crimes on display!
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