(CHICAGO 03/28/2012) – Palestinian prisoner Hana Shalabi’s health is deteriorating and she faces imminent death as her hunger strike nears the 43rd day.
Israeli Occupation authorities have held Palestinian prisoner Shalabi under administrative detention without charge or trial since her re-arrest on Feb. 16, 2012; and she has maintained a continuous hunger strike since that date. Shalabi, who’d been detained without trial or charge for more than two years, was released in the prisoner exchange on Oct. 18, 2011. Her current imprisonment began only four months after the prisoner exchange.
Doctors, who have visited her in Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba, where she’s been held since March 20, have said her muscles – including her heart – are breaking down and she could suffer a heart attack at any moment. Shalabi still refuses nutrition aside from vitamins and salts in her water and is in danger of death, according to Addameer, a prisoner rights organization in Palestine.
On Sunday, the Israeli court denied Shalabi’s appeal of her administrative detention. “In his decision, the military judge disregarded Ms. Shalabi’s critical medical condition; rather, he stated that she is responsible for her own recovery,” Addameer reported. The judge ordered her held until her four-month detention expires on June 23.
Administrative detention allows Israeli military authorities to hold Palestinians without charge or trial for six-month periods, which are renewable indefinitely. Prisoners are held on purported “secret evidence,” which is presented to a judge but never to prisoners or their lawyers. The prisoners are not told why they are being held. They are prohibited from looking at this so-called “evidence” and they receive no trial. In perpetuating these measures, Israeli occupation forces violate the basic principles of human rights and internationally recognized norms of judicial conduct and this is un-American.
According to Samidoun, the Palestinian Prisoners Solidarity Network, 320 Palestinians currently are being held under administrative detention, including a number of members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Some have been held for more than four years. Hana Shalabi is one of 4,637 Palestinian political prisoners in the jails of the Israeli occupation, 30 of whom continue to be held in isolation, from Palestinian national leaders and Palestinian children – all of whom are demanding freedom. Within Israeli jails, hunger strikes are spreading as 24 prisoners continue open-ended strikes. A prison system-wide one-day strike was held on March 24.
More action is urgently needed to mobilize global support for Hana Shalabi as her health worsens and her appeals are denied, to support her steadfast struggle for her freedom, the freedom of Palestinian political prisoners and the freedom of Palestine.
TAKE ACTION NOW!
The American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) find the resounding silence by the United States to be absolutely deplorable and in direct contradiction to the values due process and also human rights, which we cherish. AMP calls on its supporters and all those who support human dignity and social justice to call the office of Jeffrey Feltman, Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs, in the State Department and demand the US intervene to force Israel to release Hana Shalabi and all political prisoners.
National Call In Day: Call Mr. Feltman from noon to 3 p.m. EST on Thursday, March 29 and again from noon to 3 p.m. EST on Tuesday, April 3 to demand justice for Hana and all political prisoners.
Call the office of Jeffrey Feltman, Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs at 202.647.720
- State your name and the city and state where you reside. Be polite but firm.
- The fact that Israeli occupation forces deny due process to Palestinians is racist and indicative of an apartheid state.
- U.S. support of Israeli occupation in light of these facts hurts American interests abroad and threatens our national security.
- The US should demand that Israel uphold the basic values of life, liberty and dignity inherent to all human beings.
- The US should demand that Israel release Hana Shalabi and all Palestinian prisoners.