Jailed Terrorists Temporarily Halt Hunger Strike

Some 180 terrorist prisoners decide to temporarily halt hunger strike they announced in protest of the conditions of their incarceration.

Elad Benari ,

Terrorist prisoners (illustration)
Terrorist prisoners (illustration)
Flash 90

Some 180 Palestinian Arab security prisoners decided on Sunday to temporarily halt the hunger strike they announced the previous day in protest of the conditions of their incarceration, i24news reported.

It is understood the prisoners, most of whom are incarcerated in Nafha and Rimon facilities on so-called "administrative detention", scrapped the strike after the Israel Prison Service met some of the their demands, including a transfer to another wing and a letup in personal searches, according to the report.

The group will reevaluate their position in two weeks and might decide to resume the strike, it added.

Several dozen Palestinian Arab prisoners held in Israeli jails launched a hunger strike on Saturday to protest what they term as “humiliating treatment” from jailers and poor imprisonment conditions. Dozens more joined them on Sunday, bringing the total to about 180.

The mass hunger strike follows the International Committee of the Red Cross's warning on Friday that a hunger striking prisoner, Mohammad Allan, is "at immediate risk" of death after some 50 days without food. 

The Israel Prison Service (IPS) and officials at the Soroka Hospital in Be’er Sheva, where Allan is being hospitalized in the intensive care unit, are considering the possibility of force-feeding. 

On July 30, the Knesset approved a law allowing prisoners on hunger strikes facing death to be force fed, sparking criticism from left-wing NGOs and doctors.

Hospital officials have asserted that if Allan's condition becomes life-threatening he will be forcibly fed, but that, as of now, there is no danger posed to his life. 

The United Nations on Saturday condemned the new force-feeding law.

Citing a statement by the Israeli Medical Association to the effect that force-feeding is tantamount to torture, the UN labeled the practice "a violation of internationally-protected human rights".

Arab terrorist prisoners have turned hunger striking into a pressure tactic aimed at forcing Israel to release them out of fear for their lives. Israel has several times in the past caved to the pressure and released some hunger strikers.

Some 1,550 Palestinian Arabs imprisoned in Israel ended a hunger strike in May 2012, in exchange for a package of measures which would allow visits from relatives in Gaza and the transfer of detainees out of solitary confinement.