Israel's Gilboa Prison designs 'were on internet': report

Palestinian prison break: Israel's Gilboa Prison blueprint 'was on internet'
2 min read
07 September, 2021
The designs for Gilboa Prison and other Israeli jails reportedly remain available on Google, despite the architectural company's site having been taken down on Monday.
It is as yet unknown if the blueprints assisted in the Palestinian break out from Gilboa Prison [Getty]

The designs of a high-security Israeli jail from where a group of Palestinian detainees pulled off a daring breakout on Monday were available online before the escape, according to reports.

The architectural company involved in the building of the Gilboa Prison - where the six men were incarcerated - put the blueprint up online, Haaretz reported on Monday.

Poreh Yaacovi Karni Architects created the designs for the maximum-security facility, which is in Israel's north and was opened in 2004.

The escapees located an open space below their cell, which was described as a "structural flaw" by Shimon Lavi, the chief of Israel police's Northern District.

The six escaped through a tunnel dug in recent months below a cell bathroom, according to prison authorities. This was accomplished with a "rusty spoon", The Jerusalem Post said.

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The blueprint reveals the layout for Wing 2, the location the detainees broke out of, as well as the jail in general, according to Haaretz.

It is not yet known if these designs assisted in the Palestinian breakout, although one high-level figure within Israel's prison authority described its availability online as a "failure of Israel Prison Service".

The designs for Gilboa Prison and other Israeli jails remain available on Google, despite the architectural company's site having been made unavailable at some point on Monday, according to Haaretz's article.

The Israeli daily on Monday said no statement has been released by either the Israeli prison authority or the architectural company concerning the blueprint situation.

infographic - Gilboa Prison break

The prison authority was aware of the issues which facilitated the detainees' prison break for a significant period beforehand, although they were not fixed, high-level figures with the agency said.

Back in 2014, a passageway burrowed below a bathroom was located in the same jail, foiling a breakout quite like Monday's escape, The Times of Israel said.

After that failed effort, a fix for cells in the facility involving the use of concrete to fortify security was not completely finished, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Of the six who broke out on Monday, three allegedly also participated in 2014's effort, according to Israel's Walla outlet.