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After 38 Years in Israeli Captivity, Terminally Ill Palestinian Prisoner Passes Away

In the midst of political tension and longstanding dispute, a tragic event recently unfolded in the Israeli custody – the death of a terminally ill Palestinian prisoner who had been held captive for 38 years. Aziz Awisat, a Palestinian prisoner from Jabal al-Mukaber area of East Jerusalem died, course a significant wave of outcry and prompting a renewal of heavy criticism towards the Israeli prison system.

Aziz, who was serving a 30-year sentence, had been charged with killing an Israeli and injuring six others in 1982. His demise has become a poignant symbol of the protracted nature of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, shedding light on the extensive periods of time many Palestinian prisoners serve behind bars. It is also significant as it has invigorated the discussion surrounding the treatment and medical negligence within the prison system.

Aziz was suffering from heart disease and had also been diagnosed with cancer. The medical neglect in Israeli prisons has been a long-standing issue on the international arena. According to human rights organizations, at least 700 of approximately 6200 Palestinian prisoners are in immediate need of medical attention. The issue is further highlighted with Awisat’s death, as his failing health was notably exacerbated by improper medical care. Reports suggest that he was deliberately denied urgent surgery, despite his rapidly declining health.

Despite appeals from the International Red Cross, Awisat’s condition was not given the due attention, leading to his death. Concerns were raised over the lack of medical care provided in Israeli jails, where many prisoners suffering from chronic medical conditions did not receive the required treatment. This event serves as a testament to the widespread international censure over Israel’s alleged disregard for the well-being of its Palestinian prisoners.

Aziz Awisat’s death re-emphasizes the gravity of the Palestinian prisoner issue—a humanitarian crisis often overshadowed by the focus on the territorial dispute. His life and death are symbolic of the many who remain incarcerated, marginalized and forgotten. Their stories and struggle for basic human rights raise significant questions regarding the role of international bodies and their efficacy in the face of human rights abuses.

The situation isn’t only a humanitarian crisis but also a powerful political symbol. For the Palestinians, individuals like Aziz Awisat represent a contentious part of their ongoing struggle against what they perceive as an oppressor. Their incarceration echoes the larger socio-political impasse between Israelis and Palestinians. Even as peace talks and negotiations invariably stumble, his story and that of many others, offer a harrowing

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