Israel moves popular Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouti to another prison, keeps him in solitary confinement

Israel moves popular Palestinian leader Marwan Barghouti to another prison, keeps him in solitary confinement
Israel's prison service has moved high-profile Palestinian prisoner and leader Marwan Barghouti to a different detention centre.
2 min read
18 February, 2024
Barghouti has been imprisoned since 2002 and is regularly transferred to higher security jails [Getty]

Palestinian leader and high-profile prisoner Marwan Barghouti has again been moved to a different Israeli prison and remains in solitary confinement, Palestinian authorities said on Sunday.

Head of the Palestinian Ministry of Detainees and ex-Detainees, Qadura Fares, confirmed that the Israeli Prison Service moved Barghouti from Rimonim to Ayalon-Ramla prison.

Fares said in a press statement that the transfer of the Fatah movement member comes to appease Israeli public opinion.

The repeated prison transfers and the prevention of lawyers from visiting Bargouti raise real fears for his life, said Fares, especially as it is accompanied by direct and continuous incitement against him in the Israeli media.

What is happening with Bargouti and what Israeli prisons and detention centres are witnessing require quick action from relevant global authorities, Fares stressed, to put an end to violations against Palestinian prisoners.

Israel’s extremist National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir previously stated Barghouti was moved from Ofer prison to solitary confinement following information about a planned uprising in the occupied West Bank amid soaring tensions over Israel’s near-daily raids in the territory.

In recent weeks, Barghouti has returned to the fore amid speculation that the popular and enigmatic leader could be one of the prisoners released under the ongoing Hamas-Israel truce talks, being mediated by Qatar, Egypt, and the US.

He has been imprisoned since 2002, receiving five life sentences for leading Fatah’s militant faction, Tanzim, during the First and Second Intifadas, or uprisings, against Israel's illegal occupation of the West Bank, which it annexed in 1967.

Israel considers the leader one of their most high-profile detainees and, as such, regularly transfers him to higher security jails where is subjected to harsh conditions.

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Despite his imprisonment, Barghouti has remained influential among Palestinians and has been suggested as a potential successor to the current president 88-year-old Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, if he were to be freed.

Israel has arrested more than 7,000 Palestinians across the West Bank since Hamas' October 7 attack, including in Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem, Salfit, as well as Jerusalem, according to figures from the Palestinian Prisoners Society.

The Hamas attack in southern Israel subsequently led to the current war on Gaza which has killed close to 29,000 people, mostly civilians, according to Gaza’s health authorities.

Israel’s unprecedented air and ground assault has rendered most of the Gaza Strip uninhabitable and has displaced almost all of its 2.3 million population.