Prisoner (illustrative)
Prisoner (illustrative)iStock

Khader Habib, a senior member of the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization, is accusing Israel of seeking to bring about the death of terrorist prisoner Hisham Abu Hawash, who has been on hunger strike for 135 days.

In an interview with the Hamas-affiliated Al-Risala website, Habib said that the death of Abu Hawash would bring the entire region to a state of instability.

"The occupation will be sorry and pay a high price for this crime that must be condemned," Habib said, noting that Islamic Jihad leader Ziad Nahala made it clear that there would be a response to Abu Hawash’s possible death, as the organization would view it as an execution that requires a harsh and painful response.

The Organization of Security Prisoners said over the weekend that Abu Hawash’s health was deteriorating and that his life was in immediate danger. The organization appealed to the Red Cross and human rights organizations to intervene to save his life.

Jailed terrorists have several times in the past used the method of hunger strikes in order to pressure Israel to release them or improve the conditions of their imprisonment.

Israel has 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 of 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.

At times, the terrorists were found to be secretly eating during the hunger strike. A prominent example of this was in 2017, when the Israel Police released footage of archterrorist Marwan Barghouti, who was caught eating in secret while maintaining the pretenses of his own hunger strike.