Darfur refugees Tel Aviv 311 AJ.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerzolomiski)
A Darfur refugee who volunteers helping impoverished Holocaust survivors in
Israel said Tuesday that his sister is being held for ransom in Sinai, at a
‘torture camp’ where her captors are demanding $20,000 for her
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The refugee, Adam Madhi, said that the Beduin holding his sister
Laila said they will kill her by Thursday if they do not receive the
Madhi, who has been in Israel for four years, said that he
received a phone call from the Sinai last week in which a Beduin man told him
that his sister and an additional relative were being tortured within the Sinai.
Mahdi said his sister had paid smugglers to take her through the Sinai to
Israel, but along the way they or other Beduin called and said she was now being
held for ransom, according to Mahdi.
Madhi has worked as a volunteer for
the Association for Immediate Help for Holocaust Survivors, a small,
relativelyunknown organization since shortly after he arrived in Israel fleeing
the genocide in Darfur.
While no Israeli or Sudanese authority has
confirmed the case, and specific details of this particular incident are
lacking, there has been an epidemic in the Sinai of African migrants being held
in so-called “torture camps” while their captors work to extort money from their
relatives in Israel.
Many of the women held in such facilities face
repeated sexual abuse, according to eyewitness testimonies that have been
gathered by Israeli NGOs that have interviewed survivors.
In a report
released by the Physicians for Human Rights-Israel in February, 52 percent of
African migrants treated at a Jaffa clinic they operate report having suffered
physical abuse while in Sinai.
Israeli NGOs have stated that they suspect
that the situation has worsened as the Sinai has become more lawless since the
Mubarak government fell in March.