Detained TNA Arabic reporter Diaa al-Kahlout ‘being abused at Israel’s Beersheba prison’: report
A young Palestinian recently released from Beersheba Prison has said that he saw Diaa al-Kahlout, the detained Gaza bureau chief of The New Arab’s sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, in the Israeli detention facility, amid additional reports that al-Kahlout had been abused and denied proper food.
The Palestinian minor added that Israeli authorities had not yet interrogated al-Kahlout, who may be transferred to Jerusalem, like other Palestinians held in Beersheba.
Kahlout was detained on Thursday 7 December in the town of Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip, along with hundreds of other Palestinian men including his brothers and other relatives.
He was stripped and beaten by Israeli forces and forced to abandon his 7-year-old daughter, who has special needs. Beit Lahia has been almost completely destroyed by Israel, and civil defence workers recovered dozens of rotting corpses of Palestinians there on Saturday.
Israel’s indiscriminate war on Gaza has killed 20,424 people so far, most of them women and children.
The minor’s account was backed up by Palestinian poet Mahmoud Al-ِِAila, who wrote on X, formerly Twitter, that Kahlout had said his turn for interrogation “had not yet arrived”.
Kahlout had said that “one person is interrogated every 10 days” and that the situation in the prison “is very very bad,” according to Al-Aila.
“We are sleeping on floors and they are feeding us rotting bread and expired cheese – putting it in garbage bags for us to eat. They may send us to the Negev Prison or Jerusalem,” Kahlout reportedly added.
رسالة مؤلمة للصديق مراسل العربي الجديد #ضياء_الكحلوت المعتقل من داخل سجن بئر السبع— محمود العيلة (@MahmoudAila) December 24, 2023
"أنا عايش وموجود في سجن بئر السبع، ولم يأت دوري للتحقيق، يقومون بالتحقيق مع شخص واحد كل 10 أيام، وحالة السجن سيئة جدا جدا في "بركس" بالصحراء، ننام على المشاطيح وبيطعمونا خبز معفن وجبنة منتهية… pic.twitter.com/sklK5kqmkL
Kahlout’s brother had earlier said that he had been taken to the Zikim area on the border of the Gaza Strip, then to an unknown location inside Israel, without his family knowing anything of his fate.
According to Kahlout’s family, he had suffered a health crisis prior to being detained by Israel, due to the Israeli assault on Gaza and the spread of disease.
Israel has detained over 2,600 people in Gaza, including 40 medical workers and eight journalists, according to the Gaza government media office.
It has also targeted journalists, killing 101 of them, with the latest casualty being Ahmad al-Madhoun, the deputy director of the Al-Rai news agency.