RAMALLAH, Thursday, August 20, 2020 (WAFA) – Three Palestinian prisoners in Israeli custody today are engaged in an open-ended hunger strike in protest of their administrative detention.
The Prisoners Affairs Commission announced that Maher al-Akhras, Mohammad Wahdan and Musa Zahran, currently detained at Ofer, a notorious detention facility, west of Ramallah, have embarked on an open-ended hunger strike against their detention without charge or trial.
Al-Akhras, a 49-year-old father of six children from Silat Ad-Daher town, south of Jenin, has been on hunger strike for 25 consecutive days.
Following his detention and hunger strike, his health condition has deteriorated as he is now suffering from significant weight loss and has been suffering from hypertension since 2018.
Meanwhile, Wahdan, a resident of Rantis village, northwest of Ramallah, has been on hunger strike for 16 days in a row. He started his strike while he was remanded in the Israeli detention facility of Huwara, south of Nablus, before being transferred to Ofer.
As for Zahran, a resident of Ramallah, he has been hunger-striking for five consecutive days. Two days after his strike, he was held in solitary confinement.
Israel’s widely condemned practice of administrative detention that allows the detention of Palestinians without charge or trial for renewable intervals ranging between three and six months based on undisclosed evidence that even a detainee’s lawyer is barred from viewing.
The US State Department has said in past reports on human rights conditions for Palestinians that administrative detainees are not given the “opportunity to refute allegations or address the evidentiary material presented against them in court.”
Amnesty International has described Israel’s use of administrative detention as a “bankrupt tactic” and has long called on Israel to bring its use to an end.
Palestinian detainees have continuously resorted to open-ended hunger strikes as a way to protest their illegal administrative detention and to demand an end to this policy, which violates international law.
Deliberate medical negligence is a common punitive measure used against Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails. It is one of the commonly cited motivations for hunger strikers protesting the dismal and cruel conditions endured by detained Palestinians.