Jun 30, 2022
JERUSALEM WEATHER
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  • Senior Forensic Medicine official:
    “All the Martyrs we have checked and seen, none of them had any theft of their organs.”
  •   Nontheless, Fatah official repeats PA organ theft libel:
    “Israeli market traders and medical faculties steal organs from dead Palestinian prisoners” 

A top PA official in forensic medicine recently refuted the PA libel that Israel steals organs from dead terrorist prisoners and dead terrorists – so-called “Martyrs”:

Official PA TV host: “Our guest is Dr. Ashraf Al-Qadi, Acting Director-General of the [PA] Ministry of Justice’s Forensic Medicine Administration… One of the known doctors in Israel revealed that organs are being stolen from the Martyrs held in refrigerators in Israel (sic.).”

Acting Director-General of the PA Ministry of Justice’s Forensic Medicine Administration Dr. Ashraf Al-Qadi: “Of course, all the Martyrs we have checked and seen, none of them had any theft of their organs. I don’t know about the Martyrs from before, whom we did not check as a Palestinian side or authority.”

Text on screen: “Growing pain in the hearts of the Martyrs’ relatives – and bodies held in the occupation’s [morgue] refrigerators whose fate is unknown”

[Official PA TV, Good Morning Jerusalem, March 11, 2022]

Despite the explicit refutation by this PA official, the PA’s libel is thriving. Earlier this month, Spokesman of the Fatah Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Nashat Al-Wahidi repeated the false claim that Israeli organ traders and staff at medical faculties “steal organs” from dead prisoners:

Spokesman of the Fatah Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Nashat Al-Wahidi: “The bodies [of dead prisoners] are kept under very humiliating conditions for the bodies, whether it be the Israeli market traders stealing organs from these bodies [or] the Israeli medical faculties stealing these bodies.”

Official PA TV host: “Right.”

[Official PA TV, The Supreme Authority, June 6, 2022]

PA Minister of Justice Muhammad Shalaldeh also unwittingly undermined the PA libel, stating that since 2013, a PA forensic expert has been present at autopsies of Palestinians:

 “[PA] Minister of Justice Muhammad Shalaldeh… noted that in 2013 Palestine succeeded in forcibly extracting a ruling determining that a Palestinian doctor needs to participate in autopsies of Palestinians.” 

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 24, 2022]

PMW has found no record of the ruling referred to by Minister Shalaldeh.

The allegation that Israel routinely steals organs from dead Palestinians is one of the long-standing Palestinian libels documented by Palestinian Media Watch. Like many other PA libels, it contains a grain of truth that has been distorted into a lie:

In 2001, an Israeli investigative journalist exposed that from the years 1988 to 2000, in violation of Israeli law, doctors at the Abu Kabir Institute of Forensic Medicine had taken body parts for research and transplants of skin and corneas without permission from the relatives. Most body parts were taken from Israeli Jews, but also from Israeli Arabs, Israeli soldiers and Palestinian terrorists. At the time, the institute was run by Professor Yehuda Hiss who was personally involved in the scandal. Hiss was removed from his position as director but remained as chief pathologist until later investigations uncovered that he had continued his misconduct, which led to his dismissal from the Institute by the Ministry of Health in May 2012.There has been no documented case since then.

The following is a longer excerpt of the article citing PA Minister of Justice Muhammad Shalaldeh: 

“[PA] Deputy Minister of Information Yusuf Al-Mahmoud transferred a media case to [PA] Minister of Justice Muhammad Shalaldeh that sheds light on the suspicions of organ theft from the bodies of the prisoner Martyrs by the occupation, and documents them and the suffering of the Martyrs’ families. (sic.) This is as part of the media-legal campaign whose goal is to raise this matter [to the agenda] and supporting the efforts to return the bodies…  Shalaldeh emphasized that we must gather all the legal evidence regarding the occupation’s crimes in order to transfer them to the international courts. He noted that in 2013 Palestine succeeded in forcibly extracting a ruling determining that a Palestinian doctor needs to participate in autopsies of Palestinians.” 

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 24, 2022]

Reprinted with author’s permission from Palestinian Media Watch