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Palestinian given military funeral

Jaradat died after apparent torture by Israeli army

Gulf News

Ramallah: Wrapped in a Palestinian flag, Arafat Jaradat was laid to rest in the Martyrs’ Section of the Saeer Cemetery in his home village of Saeer in Hebron in a Palestinian National Authority (PNA) provided military funeral which tens of thousands of mourners attended. Jaradat has been named a martyr of the Palestinian Prisoners Movement.

Jaradat’s body was carried in a military vehicle parade from Al Ahli Hospital in Hebron to Saeer where senior officials from the various Palestinian factions and his family were waiting for the funeral.

Mohammad Jaradat said his brother was a hate victim. “We hold Israel responsible for Arafat’s death,” he told Gulf News.

“Once he was arrested on February 18 and put in the Israeli military vehicle, his screams and shouts started,” he stressed. “Israeli torture against Arafat started at the entrance of our home. The Israelis did not give Arafat a chance, hurting him all the way to the detention centre,” he said.

Mohammad said that following his brother’s screams, Mohammad followed the vehicle, but he was stopped by the Israeli intelligence officer who promised him that the forces would not torture Arafat. “As usual the Israelis did not stick to their promises and Arafat’s screams never stopped,” he said.

Eisa Qaraqei, Palestinian Minister of Detainees’ Affairs, said that Arafat died due to the brutal Israeli torture to which he was subject during the six days of his detention. “This will be an unforgettable crime of the Israeli occupation,” he said. He added that Arafat was the 203rd martyr of the Palestinian Prisoner Movement.

Dalal Jaradat, the martyr’s wife, said that she is four months pregnant and will name her baby after his father. “Arafat did not die. Arafat has raised our heads up and became the source of our pride,” she said.

Dr Yahya Rabah, a political analyst and commentator, told Gulf News that the martyrdom of one of the fasting prisoners in the Israeli jails will easily initiate a third Palestinian uprising (Intifada).

“The death of a single prisoner will automatically explode the situation in all the Israeli jails which contain thousands of Palestinian prisoners,” he said. “The Palestinian public will follow the steps of the prisoners and the Palestinian Territories will therefore explode.”

Dr Rabah said factors to spark the Palestinian Uprising are evident daily. “The Israeli’s mean, provocative, and criminal policies which made the lives of the Palestinians impossible will spark the Palestinian third uprising,” he said.

“Explosion is guaranteed and will shortly take place unless immediate international pressure is put on Israel and is maintained,” he said.

He added: “It is true that the Israelis are not in the West Bank cities, but the Palestinians know where to find them on the checkpoints and at the entrances of the cities,” he said.

“The general conditions in the Israeli jails and the Palestinian Territories in general are deteriorating in noticeable way,” he warned.