Palestinian Hunger Strikers: “Fighting Ingrained Duplicity”

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Palestinian Hunger Strikers: “Fighting Ingrained Duplicity”

WASHINGTON - Reuters is reporting: “Standing up to Israel through non-violent resistance can produce encouraging results, Palestinians said on Tuesday, after a prisoner hunger strike produced some Israeli concessions.

“The deal under which some 1,600 Palestinian prisoners agreed on Monday to end a month-long fast against Israel’s prison policy was struck on the eve of Nakba (catastrophe) Day…”

ALLAM JARRAR, via Ryme Katkhouda, rymepmc at gmail.com; Kinda Mohamadieh, kinda.mohamadieh at annd.org
Jarrar is with the Palestinian NGO Network. He is in Washington, D.C. with a delegation of the Arab NGO Network for Development, which also includes representatives from Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Tunisia, Yemen and other Arab countries. The delegation just released a paper, “Overview and Suggestions for Improving Key Areas in U.S. Foreign Policy Towards the Arab Region.” Point one is “The centrality of recognizing the Palestinian rights to democratic and development processes.”

NOURA ERAKAT, nourae at mac.com; RICHARD FALK, rfalk at princeton.edu
Erakat is an adjunct professor of international human rights law in the Middle East at Georgetown University and the U.S.-based legal advocacy consultant for the Badil Center for Palestinian Refugee and Residency Rights. She is also a contributing editor to Jadaliyya.com.

Available for a limited number of interviews, Falk is professor of international law emeritus, Princeton University and Special Rapporteur on Occupied Palestinian Territories for the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Erakat said today: “It is empowering that on the day of the 64th commemoration of the Nakba, or the day that marks the initial displacement and dispossession of Palestinians, that Thaer Halahleh and Bilal Diab will be ending their hunger strike in exchange for their freedom. As a result of an Egyptian-brokered deal between Israelis and Palestinians, all the hunger strikers will end their strike upon Israel’s vow to not renew their arbitrary detention without charge or trial upon its expiration. This marks a significant milestone in the struggle against colonial violence in Palestine. It does not however, signal an end to the struggle as demonstrated by the case of Hana al-Shalabi who spent two years in administrative detention before obtaining her release as part of the Hamas-brokered prisoner exchange only to be re-arreseted two months later. A definitive end to these punitive and racist practices necessitates the political will of international governments and agencies who have the ability to exert the requisite pressure upon Israel to comply with international law and human rights norms.”

Falk and Erakat recently wrote the piece “Palestinian Hunger Strikers: Fighting Ingrained Duplicity,” which states: “On his seventy-third day of hunger strike, Thaer Halahleh was vomiting blood, bleeding from his lips and gums, while his body weighs in at 121 pounds—a fraction of its pre-hunger strike size. The thirty-three-year-old Palestinian follows the still-palpable footsteps of Adnan Khader and Hana Shalabi whose hunger strikes resulted in release. He also stands alongside Bilal Diab who is also entering his seventy-third day of visceral protest. Together, they inspired nearly 2,500 Palestinian political prisoners to go on hunger strike in protest of Israel’s policy of indefinite detention without charge or trial.

“Administrative detention has constituted a core of Israel’s 1,500 occupation laws that apply to Palestinians only, and which are not subject to any type of civilian or public review. Derived from British Mandate laws, administrative detention permits Israeli Forces to arrest Palestinians for up to six months without charge or trial, and without any show of incriminating evidence. Such detention orders can be renewed indefinitely, each time for another six-month term.

“Ayed Dudeen is one of the longest-serving detainees in Israeli captivity. First arrested in October 2007, Israeli officials renewed his detention thirty times without charge or trial. After languishing in a prison cell for nearly four years without due process, prison authorities released him in August 2011 only to re-arrest him two weeks later. His wife Amal no longer tells their six children that their father is coming home, because, in her words, ‘I do not want to give them false hope anymore, I just hope that this nightmare will go away.’”

See recent New York Times report: “Palestinians Go Hungry to Make Their Voices Heard”

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