Thousands of Palestinian prisoners begin hunger strike
A Palestinian protestor holds a photo of loved-ones detained in
Israeli jails during a demonstration in Gaza City in solidarity with
Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike on May 5, 2014. (Photo: AFP -
Published Thursday, May 8, 2014
More than 5,000 Palestinian prisoners started an open-ended hunger
strike on Thursday, a Palestinian official told Ma’an news agency,
in solidarity with detainees held in administrative detention by
Palestinian Authority Minister of Detainees Issa Qaraqe said that
the prisoners were calling on Israel to end the practice of
administrative detention, in which prisoners - majoritarily
Palestinians - can be detained indefinitely without charge or trial.
At least three hunger strike leaders have already been placed in
solitary confinement in Beersheba prison.
The new hunger strike comes two weeks after more than 100
Palestinians in Israeli prisons launched an open-ended hunger strike
to protest their detention without trial.
Qaraqe said he held Israeli authorities responsible for this
"explosion" in protest action.
He called for May 9 to be a “Day of Rage” in solidarity with the
An Israeli prison services spokesperson could not be reached for
A 2012 agreement which ended a hunger strike of 2,000 Palestinian
prisoners was meant to end the detention without trial of
Palestinians. According to prisoner’s rights NGO Addameer, 186
Palestinians were in administrative detention as of April 1.
Palestinians held in administrative detention are often held without
charge or trial for months and without access to the evidence
leading to their detention, even though international law stipulates
this tactic only be used in exceptional circumstances.
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