Over 50 percent of the Palestinians in Ofer Prison have Covid-19

Israeli soldiers outside Ofer prison in the West Bank (Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency)

Middle East Monitor  /  February 3, 2022

More than half of the Palestinian prisoners held in Israel’s Ofer Prison in the occupied West Bank are infected with Covid-19, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club has revealed. The organization warned that the surge in the infection rate of the virus is the result of deliberate medical negligence and has spread across all sections of the prison.

It added that this exposes the absence of any preventive measures introduced by the Israel Prison Service, or even primary care for the sick prisoners. Moreover, the organization alleged that the prison administrators have turned the pandemic into a tool for abusing Palestinian prisoners.

There are currently some 4,500 Palestinians in Israeli prisons, 41 of whom are women and 160 are children. At least 360 are held with neither charge nor trial under administrative detention, said the Prisoners’ Club. It was reported last month by another prisoners’ NGO that the number of those infected with the coronavirus since April 2021 had climbed to 410.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Mai al-Kaila said that 7,934 new cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in the occupied Palestinian territories today, along with six deaths. She also reported that 3,477 people have recovered from the virus, and 88 Covid-19 patients are in intensive care, including 27 on ventilators. Gaza, meanwhile, has reported 3,321 new cases and three deaths.