Palestinian prisoners to launch hunger strike against administrative detention

Middle East Monitor  /  June 16, 2023

Palestinian administrative detainees held in Israeli jails will begin an open hunger strike on Sunday in protest against the harsh circumstances of their imprisonment and the inhumane treatment they receive, WAFA news agency reported.

News of this comes a week after the Palestinian National Prisoners’ Movement announced the formation of a special sub-committee for prisoners held under administrative detention – without charge or trial – in Israel’s jails.

According to Palestinian NGO Addameer, the number of Palestinians subjected to administrative detention has increased sharply, reaching levels unseen over the past two decades.

Israeli occupation authorities have issued or renewed 1,302 administrative detention orders since the start of 2023, raising the number of administrative detainees inside Israeli jails to 1,200.

“In 2022, Palestinian administrative detainees took a stand against the farcical nature of Israeli Military Courts and initiated a boycott. This courageous act of defiance aimed to expose the inherent biases and lack of fair proceedings within these courts: a military court of a civilian, a trial without defence, and a prison term without a charge,” said Addameer.

The Palestinian National Prisoners’ Movement also called for free people around the world to campaign in solidarity with prisoner Walid Daqqa and put pressure on the Israeli occupation to release him before it is too late. Daqqa has been detained since 1986 and was sentenced to life imprisonment for resisting the occupation. He suffers from cancer and his health continues to deteriorate due to Israel’s systematic policy of medical negligence.

The detainees fully understand the risks involved but are driven by their unwavering determination to challenge the oppressive policies of the Occupation State, in particular, the Administrative Detention policy, a psychological torture that is tantamount to a war crime under international law,

said Addameer.

“This practice of oppressive detention of Palestinians in Israeli prisons is not an isolated matter but rather a pillar of a systematic policy orchestrated by the Israeli occupation regime. Such a policy paves the way for the arbitrary imprisonment of Palestinians without charge or trial, just for the mere thought of an Israeli occupation officer that a certain Palestinian could be a threat to its security, even if it was a university student-union activity.”

Addameer also urged the public and international community to help raise the voices of the administrative detainees and spread awareness of their cause.

“Write to your representatives and to demand your respective governments to pressure the Israeli authorities to ban this systematic policy of oppression against Palestinians and to end this abusive policy. Make your statements and address them directly to the main Israeli policymakers who are responsible for the anguish of thousands of Palestinian families,” it added.