Israel released 34 year old Palestinian prisoner, Mohammed Abu Labadah, this month following his completion of a twelve year sentence.
Labadah’s is a harrowing story which includes having been subjected to savage beatings on the back and brutal torture at the beginning of his detention. The ferocity of these attacks resulted in the leakage and accumulation of spinal fluid.
Labadah underwent an unsuccessful operation and received no follow-up of his condition for eight years. This clear case of medical neglect by the prisons welfare administration led to a worsening of his condition and he developed hemiplegia in the lower half of his body.
Upon Labadah’s release, he was met immediately by medical personnel in the Gaza Strip. Medical sources in the Strip have confirmed that he suffers from numerous medical complications as a result of the neglect and that he currently suffers from hemiplegia as well as the accumulation of large quantities of spinal fluid in his back. He also suffers from atrophy of the muscles and is unable to control his bladder and bowels. It is thought that he will have to undergo numerous surgical procedures to attempt to facilitate a recovery.
According to Labadah, as a prisoner of Israel, he requested help from the doctors whilst in detention; however nothing was ever done to assist him. He also complained of the blatant negligence to the Red Cross.
Labadah stated that there were a number of other sick Palestinian prisoners with him at the Ramla Prison Hospital who were also suffering from medical neglect and mistreatment. He also asserted that the ‘hospital’ was more akin to small clinic.
MEMO Photographer: Mohammed Asad