6/19/09: Call for action – Sa'adat receives further punishment from the occupation as solidarity continues around the world

Sa’adat receives further punishment from the occupation as solidarity continues around the world
Ahmad Sa’adat’s steadfastness has inspired solidarity and action
from thousands across Palestine, throughout the Arab world, and
internationally. His nine-day hunger strike has drawn attention to the
brutal, illegitimate practices of the Israeli prison authorities, and
the urgent situation of the over 11,000 Palestinian prisoners.

Sa’adat, the imprisoned General Secretary of the Popular Front for
the Liberation of Palestine, was forcibly kidnapped in 2006 by the
Israeli military from a Palestinian Authority prison where he had been
held since 2002 under PA, British and U.S. guard, and has become a
symbol of resistance. Throughout his seven years of imprisonment, he
has refused entirely to recognize the legitimacy of Israeli military
courts used against Palestinian prisoners.

A new set of punishments have been issued against Sa’adat following
his nine-day hunger strike against the occupation’s denial of prisoners
rights, won through long struggle, and the policy of solitary

As an example of some of the solidarity actions with Sa’adat around the world, please see:

June 18, 2009 – Statement in solidarity with Ahmad Sa’adat from Irish Republican Socialist Movement (http://freeahmadsaadat.org/june18irscna.html)

June 17, 2009 – Protests across Palestine and the Arab world in solidarity with Sa’adat (http://freeahmadsaadat.org/june1709.html)

June 17, 2009 – Solidarity statement from Internationalt Forum – Denmark (http://freeahmadsaadat.org/june17ifd.html)

June 16, 2009 – Solidarity statement from Palestinian Federation of Chile (http://freeahmadsaadat.org/june16pfc.html)

June 12, 2009 – Statement in solidarity from Communist Organization of Greece (KOE) (http://freeahmadsaadat.org/june12koe.html)

The Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights sent an attorney to visit with
Sa’adat on June 15, 2009, who reported that the administration of
Asqelan prison held a hearing following the hunger strike, which
Sa’adat refused to attend, according to his principled position of
rejecting all of the mock justice of the Israeli military courts.

The hearing resulted in a severe set of sanctions directed at
Sa’adat, extending his denial of family visits, denial of visits to the
prison cateen, and a 200 shekel fine, as well as a week extension of
solitary confinement. These punishments come in addition to an earlier
set of draconian sanctions directed at Sa’adat as a result of his
leadership in the prisoners’ movement.

On May 7, 2009, the occupation forces issued a series of punishments
against Sa’adat, including denying him messages from his family for a
month, prevention of family visits until September 5, 2009, the
extension of his solitary confinement until June 28, 2009 and the
removal of all electrical appliances, newspapers and magazines.

The Al-Mezan center condemned the policy of isolation and solitary
confinement, noting that this practice violates international standards
and is classified as a form of torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading
treatment. The center called for the international community to work to
the utmost to gain immediate protection for the rights of Palestinian
prisoners, won through long struggle, and for the release of all
Palestinian prisoners from the jails of the occupation.

Khalida Jarrar, member of the Political Bureau of the PFLP and chair
of the Palestinian Legislative Council Prisoners’ Committee spoke on
Sunday, June 14, 2009, summing up Sa’adat’s nine-day hunger strike and
detailing the methods of isolation used by the occupier, noting that
there are 30 prisoners held in solitary confinement and that these men
are held in single cells 23 out of 24 hours in the day. She noted that
Sa’adat has been held in isolation since his transfer by the occupation
authorities from Hadarim to Asqelan prison several months ago, and that
his family has been barred from visiting him.

Abla Sa’adat, Ahmad Sa’adat’s wife, spoke about how she has not been
able to visit her husband for three months and that her children have
been barred from visiting him for the past three years. She demanded
that human rights institutions act upon the issue of solitary
confinement and isolation.

The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat stresses upon the urgent need for
continuing solidarity with Sa’adat and all Palestinian prisoners, and
the need to struggle for their freedom. Please send your statements of
solidarity to info@freeahmadsaadat.org and continue to contact Israeli embassies in your country and express your outrage!

Take action in your country or city. Contact your local Israeli embassy:
and express your outrage at this policy of isolation.

Also, contact the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC),
as this body is responsible for monitoring and visiting Palestinian
prisoners. Call upon the ICRC to end its silence about Palestinian
prisoners and to take action to defend their rights. Contact the
Jerusalem office of the ICRC at jerusalem.jer@icrc.org.

The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat
June 19, 2009