Mastermind Behind 'Operation Freedom Tunnel' Starts 26th Year in Prison
During his imprisonment, prisoner Mahmoud Al-Aridah completed a bachelor's degree and published several literary and intellectual works.
Palestinian prisoner Mahmoud Al-Aridah, the mastermind of operation freedom tunnel, entered Tuesday his 26th year in the Israeli occupation's prisons.
Operation freedom tunnel saw six Palestinian prisoners breaking out from Gilboa Prison. The six prisoners were Zakaria al-Zubaidi, Munadel Nafi'at, Mohammad Al-Aridah, Yaqoub Qadri, Ayham Kamamji, Mahmoud Al-Aridah.
The occupation forces arrested Mahmoud five days after he liberated himself following a very long and strenuous search. He is currently held in Jalamah detention and investigation center.
Al-Aridah was arrested on September 21, 1996. He was sentenced to 15 years and life in prison. The occupation arrested him in 1992, where he spent three years in prison.
Al-Aridah had previously attempted to dig a tunnel in Shatta Prison. However, a guard caught him and put him in solitary confinement throughout 2014.
Mahmoud Al-Aridah is one of the leaders of the PIJ prisoners in the occupation prisons, and he is of high intellectual and cultural stature there.
During his imprisonment, he completed a bachelor's degree and released multiple intellectual and literary works.
Mahmoud Al-Aridah, 45, is from Arraba, which turned into military barracks for the Israeli occupation forces. He witnessed the IOF raiding his family home numerous times.
Mohamad Al-Aridah, Mahmoud's brother, told Al Mayadeen during an exclusive call from Jenin that the Israeli occupation forces have arrested all his siblings, and that they were all released except for Shaddad, who spent seven years in prison.
"The occupation's courts have postponed the trial of the operation freedom tunnel's heroes until the 29th of September," he added.
The prisoner had sent a heartfelt letter to his mother on Friday through his lawyer:
"I tried to go to you and embrace you, dear mother before you leave this world, but God has decreed for us otherwise.
You are eternally present in my heart and spirit… I would love you to know that I ate figs, prickly pears, and pomegranates from all across Palestine. I have also eaten sumac and wild thyme. After 25 years of deprivation, I have finally eaten guava again, and in my sleeve, I bore a jar of honey as a gift for you. Please send my greetings to my beloved sisters Bassima, Rouba, Khitam, Sa’ida, and all the brothers whom I strongly miss," he wrote.