Deal Reached for Activist After Hunger Strike Lasts Nearly 2 Months

Michaela Whitton
June 29, 2015

(ANTIMEDIA) Israeli authorities have agreed to release hunger striking Palestinian prisoner, Khader Adnan. The Palestinian political prisoner—who has been on hunger strike for 55 days—will be released in two weeks, according to Israeli media.

Scores of Palestinian activists gathered outside the Asaf Harofeh hospital on Sunday, chanting messages of solidarity as Adnan’s wife, their children, and his parents were allowed to visit.

“My husband cannot stand on his feet. He tried to carry one of his children, but he fell on the ground. Next to him is a basket filled with gauze covered with blood. He has not received any real promise about his release,” his wife Randa reported earlier.

First imprisoned in 1999 for membership in the Islamic Jihad, a Palestinian political party considered illegal by Israel, Adnan’s activism has led him to spend more than six years in both Israeli and PA prisons. He was rearrested 11 months ago for the ninth time and has been held under administrative detention since July 8, 2014. When the period ended in January, the court extended it for another six months. When his detention was renewed in May for the third time, he initiated his current hunger strike in protest at being held without trial.

“The more [the Israelis] torture me, the stronger and more determined I become,” Adnan told the chief lawyer of the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society, Jawad Bolous.

Administrative detention is imprisonment without charge or trial, authorized by an administrative order rather than judicial decree. Unlike criminal proceedings, administrative detention is not intended to punish the detainee for an offense that has been committed, but to prevent a future offense. According to international law, it can be only be used in exceptional cases as the last means available for preventing danger.

According to Israeli human rights organization B’tselem:

Israel’s use of administrative detention blatantly violates the restrictions of international law. Israel carries it out in a highly classified manner that denies detainees the possibility of mounting a proper defense. Moreover, the detention has no upper time limit. Over the years, Israel has placed thousands of Palestinians in administrative detention for prolonged periods of time, without trying them, without informing them of the charges against them, and without allowing them or their counsel to examine the evidence. In this way, the military judicial system ignores the right to freedom and due process, the right of defendants to state their case, and the presumption of innocence, all of which are protections clearly enshrined in both Israeli and international law.

According to Addameer, a Palestinian prisoner support and human rights association, as of April 2015, there were 5,800 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli prisons and detention centers. 414 of these are administrative detainees and 25 women and 182 children are being held.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights had urged the international community to put pressure on Israeli forces for his immediate release.

At a press conference on Saturday, Bolous said, “What Adnan seeks is very clear: either to be released or tried. Khader is a gift for humanity since he is willing to sacrifice his life, and all he asks Israel for is to treat him as a human.”

Late Sunday evening, it was announced that Adnan will be released in two weeks. He will gradually begin to eat and drink in the meantime.


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