Saturday, May 25, 2024

1k Gaza workers in Israel ‘remain missing’: Palestinian rights groups

Palestinian human rights organisations have reported that there is no information available about 1,000 workers from the Gaza Strip who were working in Israel on October 7.

The Commission for Detainee’s Affairs, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, and the Addameer Foundation for Prisoner Care and Human Rights said in a joint statement that the number of Palestinian workers from Gaza who were in Israel before October 7 was approximately 10,300.

They added that 3,200 [workers] of them were released at the Kerem Shalom [Karem Abu Salem] crossing at the beginning of November 2023 from the detention centres where they were being held, some still wearing zip ties on their wrists bearing numbers.

“Approximately 6,441 workers were deported to the West Bank, and approximately 1,000 workers remain missing in light of the ongoing crime of forced disappearance against Gaza detainees.”

The organisations announced that Israel has so far refused to disclose their whereabouts or information about their well-being, only saying that there are two military camps for Gaza detainees – one near Be’er Sheva, and another near Jerusalem.

Israel has waged an unrelenting offensive on the Gaza Strip since a cross-border attack by Hamas last Oct. 7, which killed some 1,200 people.

More than 34,500 Palestinians have since been killed, mostly women and children, and thousands injured amid mass destruction and severe shortages of necessities.

More than six months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins, pushing 85% of the enclave’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine, according to the UN.

Israel is accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

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