Israeli officer: "Our detention camps are similar to German concentration camps"
By Khalid Amayreh
Occupied Jerusalem: 3 June, 2002 (IAP News) - An Israeli army has brazenly admitted that many of the recently- opened detention camps throughout Palestine in which thousands of Palestinians are interned were "built along the same fashion as German concentration camps during the second world war."
According to a testimony by a Palestinian detainee, who has just been freed from the Ofer detention camp, a high-ranking Israeli camp official told Palestinian detainees last month that "we will treat you in the same way the Nazis had treated us."
"We have created this camp especially for you, it is built according to the same design of a concentration camp, and what the Nazis did to us, we will do to you, and after we punish you, maybe you will find another people whom you will persecute and torment like we are doing to you."
The Palestinian detainee, identified as 34-year-old Abdul Rahman al Ahmar of the Deheishe refugee camp near Bethlehem, said he was ordered to translate the remarks of the Israeli officer from Hebrew to Arabic.
An Israeli army spokesman refused to confirm or deny the remarks.
Al-Ahmar described conditions at the Ofer detention camp as "very very harsh and criminal."
Another detainee, Jamal Abdullah Amre of al-Khalil, testified that Palestinian detainees were being systematically tortured, humiliated and harassed very harshly.
Amer said he personally was subjected to extremely harsh treatment by Israeli soldiers as he was being transferred from Hebron, where he lives, to the Ofer camp.
"I was handcuffed, and my legs were in shackles for more than six hours during which I was constantly beaten, humiliated and insulted."
The testimonies of al-Ahmar and Amer were both published in the Palestinian daily newspaper Al-Ayyam on Monday.
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