A Hatch, a Sleeping Guard, and Other Stories From Gilboa Prison Escape

Israeli media reports that the escaped prisoners from Gilboa prison remained near an exit hatch without surveillance.

In response to the most recent developments following the escape of six Palestinian inmates from Israel’s Gilboa jail, Israeli media reported that convicts remained near an exit hatch for an extended period without being caught.

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz confirmed that six Palestinian prisoners managed to escape from Gilboa Prison near the occupied city of Beit She’an, at dawn on Monday.

Israeli media has revealed that the guard on duty was asleep while the prisoners escaped, divulging that there are talks of orders not to spread information about the escape.

In a related development, Israel Ziv, a retired Israeli Major General, told Channel 12 that the escape operation has been arranged for a while, detailing that one cannot awake one morning, remove a slab of stone, discover a hole and just leap out, indicating that evidence suggests meticulous planning.

Ziv confirmed that the absence of traces from the escaped prisoners indicates that they were awaited by someone from the outside, alluding to their final destination as possibly being Damascus, seeing as the office of the Islamic Jihad is located there.

In turn, Carmela Menashe, the military commentator for the Kan channel disclosed that the escape is a massive and terrible failure on the part of the Prison Directorate. 

Israeli media reported the transfer of nearly 400 prisoners from Gilboa prison to other penitentiaries on Monday, fearing additional tunnels, noting that hundreds of special police units were dispatched to the prison to investigate the escape. 

According to Israeli media, the area surrounding the jail was heavily searched in an effort to locate the detainees. The Israeli occupation closed numerous checkpoints and tightened its grip on other military checkpoints in the West Bank.

It was also reported by a senior security official that the escape of prisoners from Gilboa reflects a “series of dangerous failures.”