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Longest hunger striker rearrested by Israel

Samer Al-Issawi, who was on hunger strike in an Israeli jail from 1 August 2012 to 23 April 2013, has been rearrested by the occupation authorities. According to the lawyer acting on behalf of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, Mofeid El-Haj, the Israelis have extended his detention subject to investigation.

Al-Issawi was sentenced to 30 years in prison in 2002; he served 10 years before being released as part of a prisoner exchange deal between the Palestinian Authority and Israel. He was re-arrested in 2012 on the pretext that he had “violated the terms of his release”. His lengthy hunger strike led to him being released again in December 2013. His latest arrest is part of the Israeli clampdown on Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem; many other ex-prisoners have also been re-arrested, with Israel now holding an additional 529 prisoners through the latest arrest campaign.

The Prisoners’ Club said that 179 detainees are from Hebron, with 87 from Nablus, 75 from Bethlehem and 52 from Jenin. Other statistics released show that Ramallah has seen 49 of its residents detained by the Israelis, Jerusalem 36, Tulkarem 23, Qalqilya 13 and 7 prisoners each from the provinces of Tubas and Salfit, as well as one from Areha.

In a statement, the club confirmed that the Israelis have ordered the transfer of four of the previously-released prisoners to the Haifa Central Court. A previous order for the transfer of 7 other prisoners was cancelled, although their detention orders were extended indefinitely. The four prisoners transferred to Haifa were named as Osman Musleh from Salfit, Samer El-Mahroum from Jenin, Wahib Abu El-Rab from Qabatiya, and Nedal Zaloom from Al-Bira.

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