After 19 consecutive days, Palestinian prisoners and detainees suspended their collective hunger strike against the Israeli occupation authorities’ arbitrary policy of administrative detention without charge or trial based solely on “secret information.” This included 30 Palestinian detainees initiating the hunger strike on 25 September 2022 and 20 other Palestinian prisoners and detainees joining in solitary the collective hunger strike on 9 October 2022.
The hunger-striking detainees suspended their collective hunger strike following an agreement with the Israeli occupation authorities to prioritize administrative detention in their dialogue with the representatives of the Palestinian Prisoners' Movement inside Israeli occupation prisons and the immediate release of sick and elderly administrative detainees, including Palestinian women and child administrative detainees within the next two months. Further, tabling a discussion on a maximum period for administrative detention renewal orders and the routine targeting of former Palestinian prisoners and detainees with repeated arbitrary arrests and administrative detention.
Importantly, the boycott of Israeli military procedures relating to administrative detention confirmation hearings and appeals is still ongoing as a strategic and central step in continuing the fight against the policy of administrative detention. Accordingly, Palestinian administrative detainees refuse to participate in court procedures and hearings; their legal counsel will no longer attend or participate in the court procedures on their behalf. This reveals the lack of trust in any judicial process and the lack of fair trial guarantees they face under the Israeli occupation's military and civil court systems.
In 2021, about 60 Palestinian detainees individually undertook hunger strikes. With the recent addition of the 50 protesters, the number of Palestinian detainees undertaking individual hunger strikes in 2022 is even higher. These rising numbers are a direct response to the Israeli occupation authorities' ever-rising use of their administrative detention scheme to collectively punish Palestinians and specifically target at-risk groups, such as former prisoners, children, and the elderly and sick.
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association affirms its commitment to stand by Palestinian prisoners and detainees and strengthens demands to end the systematic and arbitrary use of administrative detention as a coercive and punitive measure of torture against hundreds of Palestinians, including women, children, the elderly, and civil society activists. As of the end of September 2022, around 800 Palestinian administrative detainees are languishing indefinitely in occupation prisons without charge or trial, including two women, six children, and three Palestinian Legislative Council members. The international community must end its continuous silence to Israeli violations of international law and fulfill its obligations towards protecting human rights and enforcing the implementation of international humanitarian law.