Islamic Jihad spokesman Khader Adnan said Tuesday he is ending his 66-day hunger strike after worldwide sympathy pressured the Justice Ministry to decide to end his administrative detention two months from now.
Mainstream media have turned the terrorist leader into a victim and hero as he continued his hunger strike while under care in an Israeli hospital. The Islamic Jihad has been outlawed by the United States as a terror group.
Eleven people were hurt Tuesday in a protest outside his prison cell near Jerusalem while he lay in his bed in Ziv Hospital, in Tzfat in northern Israel.
Israeli security forces arrested Khader Adnan, a resident of Jenin, in December, for terrorist activities. He had appealed to the High Court to be freed but withdrew the petition after the Justice Ministry said it would not extend his administration detention.
Hamas had warned it will “use all legitimate means for freeing prisoners” and asked Egypt to intervene on Adnan’s behalf.
Adnan’s wife, her face completely covered by a veil except for her eyes, has been interviewed and photographed by media, who recorded her as saying that doctors told her husband he could suffer a heart attack at any time.
Media and pro-Arab groups are having a field day with the hunger strike although the policy of administrative detention has gone unnoticed when applied to Jews, many of whom were youths and were held without access to lawyers and families for weeks and even months.
Foreign media have compared the terrorist spokesman to former Irish IRA prisoner Bobby Sands and have made Adnan a cause célèbre to protest Israel’s policy of administrative detention, which is carried out against Jews, usually nationalists, as well as Arabs.
United Nations human rights official Richard Falk, who has a long record of attacking Israel, wrote on Al Jazeera that Adnan was subjected to “inhumane and degrading treatment that is totally unlawful and morally inexcusable.”
He and other pro-Arab public figures went so far as to complain that Israel is hypocritical by not showing sympathy for Adnan while having campaigned to secure the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit, held captive by Hamas terrorists for more than five years and without Red Cross or family communication.
Shalit was released last year in exchange for more than 1,000 terrorists and security prisoners in Israel jails, many of them serving multiple life sentences for murder. Several of them already have been re-arrested for continuing terrorist activity.