[Pnews] 18th day of Palestinian hunger strike: More prisoners join mass hunger strike

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu May 4 11:03:58 EDT 2017


  18th day of hunger strike: More prisoners join mass hunger strike

May 4, 2017

Palestinian political prisoners entered 18th day of hunger strike, the 
day that standing may become difficult or even impossible. On 3 May 
2017, significant Palestinian political leaders declared they will be 
joining the mass hunger strike. A joint press conference held in 
Ramallah on the same day declared that imprisoned Popular Front for the 
Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) General Secretary Ahmad Sa’adat will join 
the strike along with dozens of leaders from several Palestinian 
political factions such as Nael Barghouthi, Hassan Salameh, Ahed Abu 
Ghoulmeh, Abbas al-Sayed, Ziad Bseiso, Basem al-Khandakji, Mohammed 
al-Malah, Tamim Salem, Mahmoud Issa, and Said al-Tubasi.

Over 1500 Palestinian political prisoners and detainees held in Israeli 
prisons and detention centers began an open hunger strike on 17 April 
2017. The call for a hunger strike came as a result of Israeli’s 
policies and practices towards political prisoners. The hunger striking 
prisoners’ demands include: an end to the transfer of Palestinian 
prisoners from the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) into prisons in 
Israel; regular family visits; proper medical care; an end to Israel’s 
practice of detaining Palestinians without charge or trial in so-called 
administrative detentions; and stopping the use of solitary confinement.

Punitive measures imposed on hunger strikers have included: the denial 
of family visits; denial of recreational time; denial of access to the 
“canteen” (prison store); prohibition from participating in group 
prayers on Fridays; seizure of salt during the first days of the strike; 

As a result of the hunger strike, Palestinian prisoners have been 
subjected to violent and coercive measures and policies by Israeli 
Prison Service and special units to push prisoners and detainees to end 
their hunger strikes. Addameer Prisoner Support & Human rights 
Association visited non-striking prisoners in Remon and Meggido prison 
on 4 May 2017.

The non-striking prisoners informed Addameer’s attorney that Israeli 
Special unit forces regularly storm and raid prisoners’ sections 
confiscating personal belongings; only one blanket has been kept for 
each prisoner and one set of clothing in addition to the “Shabas 
clothing” or prison uniform. In all of the prisons, strikers are 
isolated, denied family visits, legal visits, and group prayers; there 
are multiple reports of confiscation of salt, and prisoners were 
provided with plastic cups in order to drink from the tap rather than 
the usually provided drinking water. Additionally, the relocation of 
several prisoners to other prisons has exacerbated their already 
deteriorating health due to a lengthy ‘transfer’ process. Hunger 
strikers have also been prohibited from washing their personal clothing 
and undergarments. In reaction to this, prisoners boycotted medical 
examinations to check their heartbeat, blood pressure, and weight.

Due to Israel’s ban of attorney visits, Addameer has not been able to 
track development in the strikers’ health and daily conditions. However, 
Adalah, the Prisoners’ Affairs Commission and the Prisoners’ Club filed 
a petition to the Israeli High Court demanding attorney visits to hunger 
striking prisoners. The petition was approved by the court allowing 
three attorneys to visit, where each attorney gets to visit two hunger 
strikers only, that is after getting the approval of the Israeli Prison 
Service (IPS).

As more prisoners are joining the hunger strike, Addameer Prisoner 
Support urges supporters of justice around the world to take action 
support the Palestinian prisoners whose bodies and lives are on the line 
for freedom and dignity. Addameer urges all people to organize events in 
solidarity with the struggle of hunger-striking prisoners and detainees.

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