Judiciary Chief Ebrahim Raisi says Iran is worried about the lives of nearly 6,000 Palestinian prisoners kept in Israeli jails as well as the people of the Gaza Strip who are living in the “world’s biggest prison” amid the coronavirus outbreak.
“Today, nearly 5,800 Palestinian men and women are imprisoned by the Zionists, and we are worried about their lives, especially given the fact that over 200 women and children are jailed under
such worrying situation,” Raisi said.
Speaking in a phone conversation with Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh, Raisi said the release of Palestinian inmates innocently jailed by the Zionist regime is more necessary than anything
else today, as they are in danger because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Iranian Judiciary chief also expressed concern over the shortage of medicine, hygiene supplies, and medical services in the Gaza Strip and the restrictions imposed by Tel Aviv in this regard.
“The Zionist regime’s move is undoubtedly a crime against humanity, as it has blockaded defenseless Muslim people and stripped them of their basic rights,” he said.
“The Zionists have created the world’s biggest prison in Gaza, where the innocent Muslim people live under hard conditions,” he said, expressing concern over the threat of coronavirus outbreak in the besieged enclave.
Raisi, who is also the head of the Iranian Judiciary’s High Council for Human Rights, also criticized the silence of the United Nations and regional countries over the Israeli regime’s cruelty against the people of Gaza.
“The silence … is surprising and indicates that they prefer their political interests over human rights,” he noted.
“The silence of international bodies and organizations and the regional Arab countries encourages the Zionist regime to continue its crimes against the innocent people of Palestine, especially those in Gaza,” he added.
His comments came a few days after Hamas warned of the dire consequences of keeping Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails and detention facilities, slamming Tel Aviv’s utter disregard for local and international calls to release them to protect their lives amid the new coronavirus pandemic.
Shaker Amara, a Hamas leader, said in a statement on Tuesday that the Israeli regime seeks to increase the sufferings of the Palestinian nation through more acts of aggression, arbitrary arrests and fear-mongering in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis.
He added, “Palestinian prisoners being held inside Israeli jails live in a tragic situation and are gripped by the fear of coronavirus spread inside prisons. The Israel Prison Service (IPS) ignores previous warnings and relevant instructions to prevent the new coronavirus spread, whilst the prisoners need exceptional measures to confront the virus.”
Also on Thursday, the Palestinian health ministry announced that the central laboratory in the besieged Gaza Strip has run out of necessary supplies to process COVID-19 tests.
The ministry warned that the absence of such supplies would lead to a large backlog of pending tests amid a battle to curb further spread of the new coronavirus.