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Hospitalised Palestinian prisoner enters 86th day of hunger strike

October 15, 2021 at 4:33 pm

Gazans stage a demonstration in support of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails in Gaza City, Gaza on October 14, 2021 [Ali Jadallah – Anadolu Agency]

Today marks the 86th day of Miqdad Al-Qawasmeh’s hunger strike, protesting against his continued administrative detention—being held without charge or trial.

Last week, the International Red Cross expressed concern for Miqdad and another prisoner, Kayed Nammoura’s well-being, saying that there were concerns “about potentially irreversible consequences of such prolonged hunger strikes to their health and life.”

Miqdad is a 24-year-old resident of the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron and recently decided to escalate his hunger strike by refusing to take any supplements or fluids.

He was arrested by the Israeli army in January, and then sentenced to six months in administrative detention. His administrative detention was renewed for a second time in June, without him or his lawyers being informed of what charges were being held against him.

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Due to the deterioration in his health, he has been admitted to the Kaplan Medical Centre, which is in the Israeli prison where he is being detained.

Israeli authorities had not placed the Palestinian prisoner under guard due to his weakened condition, reported The Times of Israel. 

Meanwhile, six other Palestinian prisoners have been on hunger strikes for several weeks, protesting against their administrative detention.

According to the Palestinian Prison Club, the hunger striking prisoners are Kayed Al-Fasfous, who has been on hunger strike for 90 days; Alaa Al-Araj, 64 days on strike; Hisham Abu Hawwash, spent 57 days without food; Rayeq Bsharat, on hunger strike for 52 days; Shadi Abu Akar, whose strike has now entered its 48th day and Hassan Shouka, on strike for 23 days.

Israel’s use of administrative detention—imprisonment without charge or trial—against Palestinians “violates international conventions and other international standards for the right to a fair trial,” PPS said, adding that administrative detainees are routinely denied family visits and other rights that should be granted to them under the law.

Since Israel began its military occupation in 1967, it has imprisoned almost 800,000 Palestinians. Around 4,500 are being held at the moment, more than 350 of whom are held as administrative detainees.

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