Israel has detained more than 15,000 Palestinian women since 1967, the Palestinian Minister of Women's Affairs said on Thursday. On the eve of International Women's Day, Jamila Al-Shanti condemned the international silence over Israel's systematic abuse of Palestinian women. "Nobody who claims to be fighting for women's rights has ever taken any action on this issue," she said.
"The Israeli occupation authorities practice physical and psychological torture against Palestinian female prisoners," the Minister said in a press statement. "They lock them up with Israeli criminals who always attack and injure them."
The Minister's statement included details of the Palestinian woman who was forced to give birth while she was handcuffed in an Israeli prison clinic. Another had to breastfeed her baby behind bars.
Thirteen female Palestinian prisoners are currently in Israeli custody, including Lina al-Jarbouni, who is serving a 16 year sentence. She was arrested in 2002.
Ignoring all national and international human rights conventions, Israeli is also detaining a female minor; Hadeel Abu-Treeki is aged 17 and from the occupied West Bank.
"On the occasion of International Women's Day, we call for the free world to work on emptying Israeli jails of Palestinian female prisoners," Minister Al-Shanti concluded.