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Hunger-striking Palestinian political prisoner describes torture in Israeli detention centre

HUNGER striking Palestinian political prisoner Heba Labadi has detailed shocking torture at the hands of Israeli interrogators who told her she would “rot in prison” after her arrest last month.

She was detained on August 20 as she crossed from Jordan to attend a wedding in the occupied West Bank with her mother.

Her lawyer explained that she was stripped naked as soon as she was arrested and placed in handcuffs and leg chains before being blindfolded and transferred to the Bitah-Tikva detention centre.

While there she was interrogated for 20 hours a day for the first 16 days of her detention, with only two breaks for meals. 

Israeli interrogators used “the dirtiest words” to insult her, she explained and she was subjected to 35 straight days of “verbal, physical and psychological abuse and torture.”

“They also insulted Islam and Christianity and said that I am an extremist,” she said. 

“They told me that they had arrested my mother and sister and they would put me under renewable administrative detention for seven-and-a-half years and then release me to the West Bank and put me under 24-hour surveillance.”

Ms Labadi is suspected of meeting with Hezbollah members during a trip to Beirut, which she and her family have denied.

She started a hunger strike after she was handed a five-month administrative detention order, meaning she can be held indefinitely without charges or trial.

According to Jerusalem-based NGO B’Tselem, at the end of August 413 Palestinians were being held under administrative detention in Israeli prisons.

Authorities ordered Ms Labadi to end her hunger strike, but she insisted that she will continue until her administrative detention order is cancelled.

“I will continue until the end or I shall die,” she said.

On Monday the Jordanian authorities demanded the release of Ms Labadi and another detained citizen, Abdurrahman Marei.


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