Palestinian prisoner on hunger strike
Man arrested under a military order Israel has named 'administrative detention'
Calling attention to the ongoing plight of Palestinians, 33-year-old Khader Adnan has gone more than 60 days without eating. The 33-year-old man was taken from his home on the West Bank in December. Arrested under a military order that Israel has named "administrative detention," which allows prisoners to be held without charge or trial for periods of up to six months, Adnan has vowed "no food without freedom."
Francis and Khader Adnan's legal team argue that, after losing some 88 pounds from more than 60 days without food, Adnan is wheelchair-bound and too weak to pose a risk to anyone.
The lawyer representing Adnan, Sahar Francis describes her client, who remains shackled to his hospital bed, as "mentally perfect, but physically very weak."
Francis is a lawyer with Addameer, a prisoner rights groups based in the West Bank city of Ramallah, and a member of Adnan's legal team. She visited her client in Ziv hospital in Safad, Israel last week.
Adnan's family and legal team were hoping that he would be released this week when his case went before a military appeals court. The appeal was denied and the court ordered that Adnan must finish the four-month administrative detention, set to end on May 8.
Francis and Adnan's legal team argue that, after losing some 88 pounds from more than 60 days without food, Adnan is wheelchair-bound and too weak to pose a risk to anyone.
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have both called on the Israeli authorities either to release him or immediately charge him with criminal offences and have him tried.
Many Palestinians in the occupied territories, incarceration is not an uncommon experience. According to Addameer, in January there were more than 4,400 Palestinian "political prisoners" in Israeli jails. Of them, 310 were being held under administrative detention.
Adnan has been detained nine times since his first arrest as a student activist in 1999. In the past, Adnan was convicted of being a spokesperson for the Islamic Jihad armed group.
One of the stories commonly told among Palestinians inside Israeli prisons is of the ten republican prisoners in Northern Ireland who died as a result of their hunger strike in 1981.
Most famous among them was 27-year-old Provisional IRA member Bobby Sands, who was elected to the British parliament during his fast, and died after 66 days of refusing to eat. This, and other hunger strikes and organized actions, were believed to have improved prisoners' conditions and made gains for their nationalist cause.
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Khader Adnan, hunger strike, Palestinians, Israel
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