Since the Israeli occupation of West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem in 1967, over 650,000 Palestinians have been imprisoned by Israel, which currently holds about 4,500 Palestinians in its jails. On average, 700 Palestinian children, some as young as 12, are arrested annually.
Palestinians are regularly arrested and detained under a set of legal procedures known as administrative detention. If in administrative detention the prisoner does not have a right to see the evidence against them, and nor does their lawyer, meaning it is impossible for them to challenge their detention. Under Israeli law, these prisoners can be held without charge or trial for a period of three months, which is renewable indefinitely, meaning that many Palestinians have spent years in jail without being charged or seeing any evidence against them.
Research by, among others, the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel and B’t Selem (an Israeli human rights organization) has shown that torture is regularly used against Palestinian prisoners. Most Palestinian prisoners are held in jails within Israel, and because the Israeli authorities make it very difficult for Palestinians to obtain permits to enter Israeli territory, families and friends are often unable to visit the detainees.
Here you can find some more information about some recent high-profile cases of Palestinian prisoners, both from Jenin region, who were among the hundreds of those incarcerated who went on hunger strike to protest against their treatment.