Marty: RI concerned about conditions of Palestinian political prisoners

Marty: RI concerned about conditions of Palestinian political prisoners

Palestinian foreign minister, Riad Malki (right) shakes hands with Palestinian minister for prisoner affairs Politics, Issa Qaraqe (left) at the 16th Special Session of the Conference for the Palestinian Minister of Meeting and the year of the 50th Non-Aligned Movement in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Friday (27 / 5) (FOTO ANTARA/Nyoman Budhiana)

Nasa Dua (ANTARA News) - Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa has expressed concern about the conditions of Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails.

Holding the Palestinian political prisoners was unfair and against the fourth Geneva Convention, Minister Marty said here Friday in a special segment of the 16th Ministerial Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) being held from May 23 to 27, 2011.

The Convention called for a peaceful, just and comprehensive solution to Palestinian issues which have so fa been hampering the peace process in the whole Middle East region, he said.

More than 6,000 Palestinians are being detained in 22 Israeli jails and prisons. They include 300 Palestinian children under 18 years old, women and legislators.

The Israeli interrogation process have reportedly involved violence. In most cases, the Palestinians have been denied access to lawyers, medical treatment and visits by their relatives.

Minister Marty stated the Fourth Geneva Convention on foreign occupation must be applied in this context and the Palestinian political prisoners held by Israel occupying power is a blunt violation of the Convention.

"Therefore, we ask Israel as an occupying power to abide by the Fourth Geneva Convention," Marty said.

The international community must follow up that condition, such as in the related meetings in Algeria in December 2010, Morocco in January 2011, and an international UN meeting on political prisoners in Austria in March 2011.

The political prisoner case is a hindrance in the efforts to achieve a just, peaceful and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian problem, Marty said.

"We must not stop supporting the Palestinian struggle until the problem is solved completely in line with the relevant UN international resolutions," Marty stated.

The NAM has also encouraged its member countries to support an independent state of Palestine.

In the Bali Commemorative Declaration issued by the NAM meeting on Wednesday (May 25), NAM member states said they would remain in the forefront of support for the Palestinian people to realize freedom, peace and justice, in line with the long-standing international consensus recognizing the Palestinian people as a nation. (f001/HAJM)