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EU official: Israel denying lawmaker access to hospital

Sept. 20, 2010 4:52 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 21, 2010 8:02 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities are preventing a sick Palestinian lawmaker from accessing health care, a former European parliamentarian said Monday.

Palestinian Legislative Council member Khalida Jarrar was advised by doctors to undergo urgent brain scans more than two months ago, after tests at a Ramallah hospital revealed concerning results, former European Parliament vice president Luisa Morgantini said.

The former EU official said Jarrar was advised to go to Amman, Jordan immediately as Palestinian hospitals were not equipped to administer the scans required. However for more than six weeks, Israeli security services have prevented Jarrar's travel due to "security reasons,"

Jarrar's lawyers obtained an official letter dated 17 August from Israel's Civil Administration in the West Bank, which stated there was "no security reason" to prevent the lawmaker's travel abroad. However, Jarrar said on 30 August she attempted to cross the Allenby Bridge into Jordan and Israeli soldiers prevented her passage, citing "security reasons."

Jarrar is a lawmaker affiliated with the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and has never been incriminated in, or related to, any violent act, Morgantini added, noting that depriving Jarrar of her right to health showed "only one of many tragic and dark sides of the Israeli military occupation."

Morgantini appealed to the European Parliament to request that Israel authorities allow Jarrar to access urgently needed medical attention in Jordan, and "to guarantee health and life rights to the Palestinian people."

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