[Pnews] Israeli court refuses to release hunger striker on brink of death

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Jan 28 11:44:14 EST 2016

  Israeli court refuses to release hunger striker on brink of death

Charlotte Silver <https://electronicintifada.net/people/charlotte-silver>
27 January 2016

Journalist Muhammad al-Qiq 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/muhammad-al-qiq> is to remain in 
detention, despite his critical condition after 63 days of hunger strike 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/hunger-strike>, Israel’s highest 
court ruled 
on Wednesday.

Al-Qiq has consumed nothing but water during his two-month protest of 
his detention without charge or trial under an administrative detention 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/administrative-detention> order 
issued by an Israeli military court 

Jawad Boulos of the Palestinian Prisoners Society said al-Qiq is 
partially paralyzed and has trouble speaking. His legal team warned that 
his organs are at risk of failure any day.

    No negotiations

Israel has refused to negotiate with al-Qiq, Boulos said 
<http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.699506>. Instead, Israeli 
authorities have tried to pressure 
al-Qiq to end his hunger strike by bringing food to his bedside and 
denying him access to his lawyer, family and an independent physician.

Al-Qiq’s wife, Fayha Shalash, has been told that her husband’s life is 
in real danger <http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.699506> 
and he may not survive many more days of hunger strike.

HaEmek hospital, where al-Qiq has been held since late December, has 
refused independent examination by a doctor with Physicians for Human 
Amany Dayif, director of the group’s prisoner and detainees department, 
told The Electronic Intifada.

“That raises a lot of questions, especially in light of al-Qiq’s 
statements about being treated against his will,” Dayif said.

On 10 January, prison guards at the civilian hospital shackled al-Qiq to 
his bed while a medical team put an IV into his arm to forcibly 
administer salts and minerals. The IV remained in his arm for four days, 
according to 
the Palestinian prisoner advocacy group Addameer 

Amnesty International 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/amnesty-international> has 
condemned <https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/mde15/3299/2016/en/> 
these measures as tantamount to torture.

Addameer stated that any treatment without consent could put al-Qiq’s 
life in danger, pointing to the deaths of Palestinian prisoners held by 
Israel who were force-fed during a mass hunger strike in 1980.


Al-Qiq, 33, began his hunger strike on 25 November, four days after he 
was arrested <http://www.addameer.org/prisoner/mohammad-al-qeiq> in the 
middle of the night from his home in the occupied West Bank city of 

Initially, al-Qiq stopped eating to protest his brutal interrogation. He 
remained on hunger strike when he was placed under administrative 
detention on 17 December.

Molly Malekar, program director at Amnesty International Israel, told 
/Haaretz/ <http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.699506> that 
al-Qiq should be put on trial or released.

“Instead, [Israel is] choosing a third option, which is to cause the 
death of a prisoner who is apparently innocent of any crime,” she said.

Al-Qiq was tortured during his first two weeks of interrogation and 
denied access to a lawyer, according to 
<https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/mde15/3299/2016/en/> his lawyers 
and Addameer.

For up to 15 hours a day, al-Qiq was tied to a chair in a contorted 
position. He was threatened with sexual violence and a lengthy prison 
sentence if he did not confess to allegations against him.

The first time he saw his lawyer was at a hearing at Ofer military court 
on 24 December. Al-Qiq was so weak he appeared in the courtroom in a 


A journalist with the Saudi news agency Al Majd, al-Qiq has also written 
opinion pieces for local Palestinian outlets.

Human rights groups and Palestinian journalists have accused Israel of 
detaining al-Qiq because of his press work.

A military court judge told al-Qiq that the secret file of evidence 
against him includes incitement to violence. The file also alleges that 
he worked with Hamas-affiliated media and accuses him of posing a 
“threat to the security of the area.”

On Tuesday, a few dozen journalists and politicians protested 
outside the hospital where al-Qiq is being held. The demonstration, 
organized by I’lam, a Palestinian group in Israel that campaigns for 
media freedoms, was joined by several Palestinian members of Israel’s 
parliament, the Knesset <https://electronicintifada.net/tags/knesset>.

One of those lawmakers, Basel Ghattas 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/basel-ghattas>, sent a letter to 
Israel’s public security minister, Gilad Erdan 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/gilad-erdan>, warning 
<http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.699506>: “You have the 
power to prevent further deterioration in the prisoner’s condition and 
to prevent the serious public ramifications that can be expected if any 
harm befalls the prisoner.”

In its Wednesday ruling, the high court said it would continue to 
monitor al-Qiq’s situation.

The court took a similar position with hunger striker Muhammad Allan 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/muhammad-allan> last August, 
freezing his administrative detention only when medical tests indicated 
the prisoner had suffered brain damage 
as a result of his protest.

Allan was only released 
on 4 November, when his detention order expired.

Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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