Zaher Ghanem, who was recently released from Israeli prison having served an 18-year sentence, was interviewed by Palestinian Authority TV on December 27, 2020. He warned that Israel might use the opportunity provided by COVID-19 to poison prisoners "with blood on their hands" and blame their death on the pandemic. Al-Ghanem was arrested in 2002 on his way to carry out a suicide operation.
Zaher Ghanem: "The issue of the coronavirus is a grave matter."
Ghanem: "If the coronavirus enters the prisons... There are many prisoners serving life sentences, those who are described as 'having blood on their hands.' Israel may exploit the coronavirus in order to poison the Palestinian prisoners, and it will be claimed that they died from the coronavirus. I wanted to warn [you] against this."
Interviewer: "A very important issue."
Ghanem: "Yes. The issue of coronavirus in prisons should be monitored especially as cases [of coronavirus] were found in the Gilboa, Ofer, and Megiddo prisons."
Ghanem: "If this pandemic enters the prisons... We have leaders there, we have some great prisoners there."
Ghanem: "They are serving dozens of life sentences, twenty, sixty, or seventy... They are regarded by Israel as dangerous. They will be killed by poisoning, under the pretext of coronavirus."