Freed Hunger Striker Announces Return to Terrorism

Ayman Sharawna, a terrorist freed after an eight-month hunger strike, has publicly announced that he has rejoined Hamas.

Elad Benari ,

Prisoners in Ofer jail (archive)
Prisoners in Ofer jail (archive)
Israel News photo: Flash 90

Ayman Sharawna, a terrorist freed from prison by Israel after an eight-month hunger strike, has publicly announced that he has returned to terrorist activities.

A story which recently aired on the Lebanese Al Mayadeen television network and which was reported by the Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Center, documented Sharawna as he returned to Hamas’s Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades. The Al Mayadeen reporter showed Sharawna in his home in Gaza and accompanied him as he took part in Hamas terror operations near the border with Israel.

According to the reporter, every Thursday night Sharawna dons his uniform, takes out his gun and gets involved in Hamas's nocturnal activities. Sharawna was seen saying that Hamas will defend its land and liberate Judea, Samaria, the Temple Mount, "all of Palestine from the river to the sea” and the “Palestinian prisoners held in Israel."

Sharawna was arrested in 2002 and sentenced to 38 years in prison for his role in multiple terrorist attacks, including a bombing in Be’er Sheva that wounded 18 people. He was released in 2011, as part of the deal to free captive soldier Gilad Shalit.

He was rearrested in 2012 after returning to an active role in Hamas in violation of his release terms. Israeli prosecutors sought to force him to serve the remainder of his 38-year sentence, but he was ultimately released as his health deteriorated due to a hunger strike.

Sharawana was deported to Gaza, rather than his family’s home in Hevron, under the terms of his release. He declared victory after his release, saying, “No one can free a Palestinian prisoner but his persistence, determination and strength… I was able to stay strong and defeat the Israeli occupation.”

The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Center noted in its report that it has become a common occurrence for terrorists who were freed in the Shalit deal to shamelessly resume their terrorist activities.