The political prisoner Khader Adnan died today after 86 days on hunger strike. For many decades, Khader was routinely arrested by Israel, placed in administrative detention and held without charge before release. On 5 occasions in the past 20 years he had resisted this illegal and immoral treatment though hunger strike. Israel bears full responsibility for his death.
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association report that Israel currently holds nearly 5,000 Palestinians as political prisoners. Over 1,000 of them are held in administrative detention, indefinitely without charges or trial, and on secret evidence not available even to their lawyer.
Arbitrary detention is one element of the crime of apartheid repressing the Palestinian people. Israel aims to stifle resistance to it’s system of oppression. The systematic use of administrative detention is a violation of international law, as is the transfer of prisoners from occupied territory into Israel. Nearly all Palestinian prisoners from the occupied territories held by Israel experience this.
Palestinian detainees are also systematically subjected to torture and ill-treatment, which is absolutely prohibited under international law. This includes medical negligence by withholding or delaying access to treatment, assaults and beatings, and psychological torture.
The numbers of Palestinians currently held in administrative detention is the highest number for two decades. This is a result of the efforts by Israel’s far right government to intensify its assaults on Palestinian rights.
In the face of this intensifying repression, Palestinian prisoners continue to resist Israel’s punitive regime and call for freedom and justice, including through taking collective action like boycotting military courts or hunger strike.
If the UK is serious about human rights and the rule of law, it must introduce consequences for Israel’s immoral and illegal treatment of Palestinian prisoners. Specifically, the UK should press Israel to immediately release all Palestinian prisoners held in violation of international law, including the hundreds held in administrative detention, and the thousands held in prison after illegal transfer.
We send solidarity to the family of Khader Adnan, to all Palestinian political prisoners and to all Palestinians resisting the ongoing Nakba. We call upon all people of conscience in Britain to join us in London on May 13th as we march to commemorate Nakba75.