Red Cross: Force-feeding Palestinian prisoners 'illegal'

Earlier Monday, the Israeli Knesset delayed its second vote on a bill that would allow prison authorities to force-feed hunger-striking Palestinian detainees.

Red Cross: Force-feeding Palestinian prisoners 'illegal'

World Bulletin / News Desk

An official with the International Committee of the Red Cross on Monday warned Israeli doctors against partaking in any attempt to force-feed hunger-striking Palestinian detainees, describing the practice is illegal.

"Any doctor who feeds prisoners by force violates the ethics of the profession," Healthcare In Detention Coordinator at ICRC Raed Abu Rabi told Israel Radio, the Palestinian Wafa news agency reported.

"Any doctor in the world who violates the law by force-feeding the hunger-striking prisoners can be prosecuted," he said, hailing a decision by the Israel Medical Association to refuse to participate in any such attempt.

Earlier Monday, the Israeli Knesset delayed its second vote on a bill that would allow prison authorities to force-feed hunger-striking Palestinian detainees.

The delay was the result of pressure by the centrist Yesh Atid party and its leader, Yair Lapid, who also serves as finance minister, to postpone voting on the controversial bill for one week.

The bill, which was passed in its first Knesset reading, must be approved by parliament twice before becoming law.

Scores of Palestinian "administrative" detainees have remained on hunger strike for more than six weeks to protest their ongoing detention-without-charge by Israeli authorities.

They have been joined by scores of other Palestinian prisoners in a show of solidarity.

Israel's policy of "administrative detention" allows it to detain Palestinian prisoners indefinitely without trial or charge. Administrative detention orders can range from one to six months in length and can be extended by Israeli military courts by up to five years.

According to the Palestinian Prisoners' Society, an NGO, some 5270 Palestinians – including 191 in administrative detention – continue to languish in jails throughout the self-proclaimed Jewish state.

Israel rearrests Palestinian hunger-striker

Israeli authorities on Monday rearrested Samer Issawi, who was released in December following a record nine-month hunger strike.

"Samer was arrested from home [in East Jerusalem] by a joint Israeli force without a reason," his father Tarek Issawi told Anadolu Agency.

The Palestinian Prisoner Society, an NGO, said in a statement that Israeli authorities have decided to keep Issawi in detention for 24 hours pending investigation.

There was no comment from Israeli authorities.

Issawi was released in December as part of a deal, under which he ended his nine-month hunger strike in protest at his detention.

Issawi ended his strike on April 23 after accepting a deal thrashed out by Israeli and Palestinian officials under which he served eight months in prison on charges of violating bail conditions for an earlier release.

He had been released in 2011 as part of a prisoner exchange deal between the Palestinian Authority and Israel after spending ten years in prison.

Issawi was later arrested in 2012 on claims of entering Al-Ram town northeast of Al-Quds in violation of the deal.

According to the Palestinian Prisoners' Society, some 5270 Palestinians – including 191 in administrative detention – continue to languish in jails throughout the self-proclaimed Jewish state.

Last Mod: 24 Haziran 2014, 09:55
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