[Pnews] Israel fails to respond to Palestinian prisoners' hunger strike demands

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue May 16 10:50:40 EDT 2017

  Barghouthi to stop drinking water as Israel fails to respond to hunger
  strike's demands

May 16, 2017 - http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=777084
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- As the mass “Freedom and Dignity” hunger strike in 
Israeli prisons entered its 30th day on Tuesday, the Palestinian 
Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs announced that leader of the strike 
Marwan Barghouthi <http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=777063>will 
stop drinking water in response to Israel’s continued refusal to respond 
to the hunger strikers’ demands.

Participants in the strike, now involving some 1,300 Palestinian 
prisoners, have been refusing food and vitamins since the strike began 
on April 17, drinking only a mixture of salt and water as sustenance.

Hunger-striking prisoners are calling for an end to the denial of family 
visits, the right to pursue higher education, appropriate medical care 
and treatment, and an end to solitary confinement and administrative 
detention -- imprisonment without charge or trial -- among otherdemands 
for basic rights. <http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=776379>
The committee’s statement quoted lawyer Khader Shqeirat as saying that 
Barghouthi’s decision to escalate measures by refusing water would be “a 
new turning point in the ongoing open-ended hunger strike.”

The Israeli government, the statement said, is responsible for leading 
the prisoners’ along a “tragic and disastrous road” and putting hunger 
strikers in imminent danger, by taking “a criminal stance regarding the 
just demands of prisoners.”

According to the committee, Barghouthi insists on transparently 
achieving all of the demands made by the hunger-striking prisoners under 
his leadership, without bargaining or making compromises.

The committee also called upon the United Nations Security Council and 
the General Assembly to hold an emergency meeting regarding the 
prisoners’ strike, to oblige the Israeli government to respect 
prisoners’ rights enshrined under international law, and to call on 
Israel to end its policy of inflicting a “slow death” on the Palestinian 

On Monday,reports emerged 
<http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=777072> in Israeli media that 
Palestinian security officials and officials of Israel’s internal 
security agency, the Shin Bet, were attempting to reach an agreement 
that would end the hunger strike.

As Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan has previously said the 
demands would only be addressed once the strike was ended, Palestinian 
officials warned their Israeli counterparts that such an approach would 
spark an escalation of popular protests that have been staged daily 
since the strike began -- many of which have erupted intoviolent 
clashes. <http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=776735>

Meanwhile, hunger-striking prisoner Karim Yunis, the longest serving 
Palestinian prisoner, insisted that any legitimate negotiations must 
include leaders of the strike such as Barghouthi, and rejected reported 
attempts by Israeli intelligence as “false and futile negotiations aimed 
at breaking the hunger strike in exchange for empty promises.”

A statement released Tuesday by the media committee established to 
support the strike warned that striking detainees have “entered a 
critical health condition,” marked by chronic vomiting, vision 
impairment, fainting, and an average weight loss of 20 kilograms.

“In spite of this, (hunger strikers) sent many messages confirming that 
they will continue the strike until their demands are achieved,” the 
statement affirmed.

The media committee said that the Israel Prison Service (IPS) has 
continued to isolate strike participants from the outside world through 
the use of solitary confinement and restricting lawyer visits for the 
majority of detainees -- in spite of a recent Israeli Supreme Court 
decision compelling IPS to lift the ban on lawyer visits 
<https://www.adalah.org/en/content/view/9091>, which was imposed since 
the first day of the strike.

Hunger-striking prisoners have also been prohibited from receiving 
family visits outright, and face continuous arbitrary prison transfers 
in an IPS attempt to break up the strike.

On Monday, IPS moved 36 hunger-striking prisoners from Ofer prison to a 
so-called field hospital at Hadarim prison, according to the media 

The committee reiterated concerns about the field clinics -- set up by 
Israel in anticipation of the mass hunger strike to avoid transferring 
the prisoners civilian hospitals.

“In these clinics, the role of doctors resembles the role of jailers who 
offer all kinds of food to the sick detainees and bargain them to 
provide medical treatment in return for ending the strike,” the 
statement declared, denouncing the field hospitals as unfit and 
ill-equipped to provide medical care, and merely just another section 
for holding and pressuring the detainees to break their strikes.

The hunger strike’s media committee also reported that the Independent 
Permanent Human Rights Commission of the Organization of Islamic 
Cooperation has called the group working on the cause of Palestine, 
during its meeting in Jeddah, to launch campaigns to support the 
Palestinian striking detainees and put pressure on Israel to respond to 
their demands.

Meanwhile, Palestinian prisoners’ solidarity network Samiduon 
highlighted that Palestinian circus performer Muhammed Abu Sakha, has 
been participating in the strike since its first day.

Abu Sakha has been held without trial or charges since December 2015, 
which has inspired an international campaign 
<http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=774423> demanding his immediate 

Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer reported 
Thursday that following the expiration of Abu Sakha’s detention on June 
11, the Israel’s Supreme Court decided to limit the extension of his 
detention to three months, following a successful petition by his lawyer.

Abu Sakha is among 500 of the 6,300 Palestinian prisoners held under 
administrative detention, according to Addameer.
Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
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