Israel has forbidden contact with the 1,500 Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike for the past eight days, the lawyer wife of protest leader Marwan Barghouti tells AFP.
“International organizations like the Red Cross, Israeli Arab parliamentarians and lawyers are forbidden from visiting the prisoners on strike,” said Fedwa Barghouti, who like her husband is a senior member of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party.
“These Israeli measures are illegal and contravene the most basic of human rights,” she says.
Lawyers got Israel’s Supreme Court to declare the ban illegal, but “were surprised to find they were still not permitted to visit detainees on the pretext that their health did not allow it,” Barghouti adds.
Her 57-year-old husband, who is serving five life sentences over his role in the second Palestinian intifada or uprising, went on hunger strike on April 17 to demand better conditions.