A Palestinian Authority court in Jericho ordered the release of two senior political prisoners on Tuesday whose detention 16 days ago triggered an angry reaction in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus. Musab Shtayyeh and Ameed Tabila are wanted by Israel for resistance acts. Both are members of the military wing of Hamas, Al-Qassam Brigades.
Shtayyeh has been arrested three times and spent four years in Israeli prisons. The occupation forces listed him among those wanted by them since June 2021 and raided his family home in the town of Salem, east of Nablus, several times in an effort to arrest him.
He has also survived several assassination attempts, most notably when a group of resistance fighters were besieged in the Yasmina neighbourhood in the old city of Nablus on 24 July, when Mohammad Al-Azizi and Abd Al-Rahman Sobh were killed.
The PA security services turned Shtayyeh and Tabila over to the notorious Jericho Prison, known as the "slaughterhouse". From the time of his arrest, Shtayyeh started an open-ended hunger strike in protest against his detention.
On Monday, the PA prevented lawyer Mustafa Shatat and Shtayyeh's father from visiting him in prison for the second time.