JERUSALEM, Thursday, 22 October 2020 (WAFA) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said today that it is seriously concerned about the deteriorating health of Maher al-Akhras, a Palestinian administratively detained and hospitalized in Israel, who has been on hunger strike for 89 days today demanding an end to his illegal administrative detention.
“ICRC doctors have been visiting Mr. al-Akhras and closely monitoring his situation”, said the head of ICRC’s health department in Israel and the occupied territories, Yves Giebens. “More than 85 days into the hunger strike, we are concerned about potentially irreversible health consequences. From a medical perspective, he is entering a critical phase”.
As a neutral humanitarian institution, the ICRC neither supports nor advocates against a hunger strike. ICRC staff monitor the situation of hunger-strikers to ensure that they are treated with respect, have access to adequate medical care, and are allowed to maintain contact with their families, said an ICRC press statement, adding that the most recent visit to al-Akhras took place today.
“The ICRC encourages the patient, his representatives and the competent authorities involved to find a solution that will avoid any loss of life,” concluded the press statement.
Al-Akhras, married and a father of six from the northern West Bank district of Jenin, has been on hunger strike since late July following his detention. He vowed to remain on hunger strike until his release from prison, or his death.