40 more Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails went on a hunger strike on August 5, in solidarity with striking administrative detainees who are protesting their illegal and brutal detention, the Palestinian Prisoners Club announced on Tuesday.
The 40 prisoners joined 20 others who began a hunger strike last week. All the 60 are members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).
The prisoners are being held in various prisons in Israel, including the Gilboa prison, Ramon prison, Nafha prison and Ofer prison. The prison branch of the PFLP issued a statement in which it saluted the prisoners on their struggle, saying, “We, your comrades in the prison branch, consider every victory achieved by the prisoners’ struggle to be another nail in the coffin of the administrative detention policy.” The PFLP also announced that more prisoners will join the strike soon.
In a related development, two of the striking administrative detainees, Mohammed Abu Aker and Mustafa al-Hassanat, suspended their hunger strikes on August 5, after 36 days without food. According to the agreement reached between the detainees and the Israeli prison authorities, Abu Aker will be released in three months and his detention will not be extended again. Hassanat will also be released in six months. Six other administrative detainees are continuing their hunger strikes.
The Palestinian Prisoners Club reported that the Israeli prison service has been treating the detainees in very cruel and inhumane ways ever since they decided to go on hunger strike. The prisoners are reportedly being kept in solitary confinement and are being held in cells “which are not fit for humans.”
There are approximately 500 Palestinians under administrative detention in Israel without charge or trial. More than 5,700 Palestinians are currently languishing in Israeli jails.