The Hamas-run Gaza government’s Ministry of Prisoners and Freed Detainees announced on Wednesday that Israel’s Al-Nakb Prison had begun conducting full-body searches on detainee’s visiting mothers and wives in which the latter were forced to remove all their clothes.
A ministry statement noted that the prison administration had brought female police personnel who forced detainees’ female family members to undress completely before undergoing humiliating searches. Children less than one year old had also been subject to such searches, the statement added.
Hamas went on to describe the provocative move as “unprecedented,” warning that it could lead to unanticipated consequences.
According to recent official Palestinian figures, roughly half of all Palestinian families had experienced some form of direct violence at the hands of Israeli occupation forces and/or extremist Jewish settlers.
In a study on violence in Palestinian society conducted this year, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics noted that the percentage of families affected by direct Israeli violence was highest in the besieged Gaza Strip.
The study found that almost 6 per cent of young Palestinian men and children had been subject to psychological violence by occupation forces and/or Jewish settlers, while 3 per cent had suffered physical violence. The study also found that 8 per cent of young Palestinian men had been subject to psychological and/or physical violence at Israeli checkpoints in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
The full text of the report can be found at: http://www.pcbs.gov.ps/Portals/_pcbs/PressRelease/violenceSurv_2011E.pdf