RAMALLAH, Palestine : The Israeli forces have detained some 135,000 Palestinians since the outbreak of the Palestinian Al-Aqsa Intifada, also known as Second Intifada, in September 2000, a Palestinian official group said on Thursday.
In a statement marking the 23rd anniversary of the Al-Aqsa Intifada, the Commission for Prisoners’ Affairs of the umbrella Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said those detained included nearly 21,000 minors and half of the Palestinian parliament members of the last term.
It added that among the arrested Palestinians, there were government officials, ministers, academics, journalists, and activists.
The Second Intifada, which continued till February 2005, claimed the lives of 4,412 Palestinians and injured nearly 49,000 people.
The commission also noted that 2,600 women were also among the detainees, including four mothers who gave birth to their babies while in prison under difficult circumstances.
It also documented an increase in the cases of administrative detention that reached 32,000.
The Israeli policy of administrative detention allows Israeli authorities to extend the detention of a Palestinian prisoner indefinitely without charge or trial.
During the same period, the commission said 114 Palestinians died in Israeli prisons due to torture or deliberate medical negligence.
According to the latest figures, 5,200 Palestinians are languishing in Israeli jails, including 38 women, 170 minors, and around 1,200 placed under administrative detention.
The Al-Aqsa uprising or intifada began in Jerusalem on Sept. 30, 2000, two days after Ariel Sharon, then leader of Likud – a center-right political party in Israel – stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem. — AA