Suffocation
Date: 
June 28, 2021
Author: 
blog Series: 
Bronze Sculpture by Serwan Baran: International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

I was arrested when I was 16 years old. I spent 20 years in Occupation prisons (1993 - 2013).

 

Poster for Mohammed Abu Afefa 2008, Palestine Poster Project 

 

What I remember most from the interrogation period, which lasted 63 days, was the time I spent in the bathroom eating a meal, after hours of sitting on a small chair listening to beats of loud music preventing me from sleeping, clouding my thoughts. 

Sitting in the bathroom with the door closed behind me to eat and urinate at the same time made me feel humiliated, disgusted, and inhuman. Despite the hunger, I would not dare eat the cold food on a plastic tray on the bathroom floor. Instead, I ate standing; I almost cried from fatigue, hunger, and the need for sleepThis process would take place three times a day for 20 minutes. 

The bathroom is shut by an iron door: there is a small closed window, a sink, a toilet. The floor is concrete, the walls are rough, the lights are dull yellow. 

Although I was very tired, there was nowhere for me to rest but the damp ground. 

I have endured all kinds of torture, but this experience still haunts me and makes me nauseous to this day. I cannot stay in the bathroom for more than ten minutes - I still feel like I may suffocate.

This article is part of a series for the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture on June 26. Inspired by Iraqi artist Serwan Baran’s bronze sculpture depicting prisoners of opinion, Palestinian prisoners wrote about their experiences with the Israeli occupation prisons.
About The Author: 

Ismat Omar Mansour is a freed prisoner, writer and journalist, born in 1976.

From the same blog series "Bronze Sculpture by Serwan Baran: International Day in Support of Victims of Torture"
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