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Shaath demands decisive European stand on suffering of Palestinian prisoners

February 17, 2014 at 11:16 pm

A senior member of Fatah’s central committee, and the movement’s commissioner for international relations, has called for a decisive European position “to ensure that the just demands of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails are met”, bringing about an end to their “suffering”.

Nabil Shaath made his statement following a meeting with a parliamentary delegation representing Britain’s Labour Party in his office in Ramallah. He reaffirmed the justice of the prisoners’ demands, notably the right to have visitors and education, and an end to “illegal” administrative detention and solitary confinement. Shaath stressed the need for the international community to take practical steps to force Israel to respond to the demands. Warning of the repercussions of Israeli procrastination, Shaath pointed out the serious implications on the lives of the hunger striking prisoners in Israeli cells.

In a statement released by Fatah’s media department, Shaath said that he briefed the British parliamentarians on the latest developments in Palestine, including national reconciliation and the future of Palestinian moves on the international scene. Israel’s expanding illegal settlements across the West Bank, including Jerusalem, and their negative impact on the peace process were also on the agenda.

“Mr. Shaath and the delegation discussed the possibility of creating a political partnership between Fatah and the British Labour Party,” said the media spokesman, “with the intention of forming a unified position on key political issues.” Such a step would include contacts with socialists across Europe, especially important after the centre-left’s victory in the French presidential elections, he added.