National Day of Action Tuesday for Hunger-Striking Palestinian prisoners
Urge the State Department to intervene
(CHICAGO 06/12/2014) – The American Muslims for Palestine, a national education and advocacy organization, today expresses grave concern over Israel’s treatment -- including a pending bill that would permit force feeding -- of nearly 125 Palestinian political prisoners, who are being incarcerated indefinitely without charge or trial, a procedure known as administrative detention. This is the longest lasting mass prisoner hunger strike in Palestinian history. The prisoners began their fast on April 24. One, Ayman Itbeish, 34, passed his 100th day of hunger striking on Saturday, June 7. His health is considered to be at "high risk."
Administrative detention contravenes international law. It allows the Israeli military to hold prisoners indefinitely on secret evidence without charge or trial. It is renewable indefinitely for repeated periods of up to six months. Palestinians have been subjected to administrative detention since the beginning of the Israeli occupation and before that time, under the British Mandate. Both adults and children are subject to this unjust incarceration.
There are currently 192 Palestinians under administrative detention, eight of them members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, as of May 1, 2014, according to prisoner rights group, Addameer.
The prisoners are protesting Israel’s failure to comply with promises made in 2012 in response to a massive action when 50 percent of the political prisoner population waged a hunger strike to force changes in administrative detention, lack of exercise and access to medical treatment, and prohibition of family visits.
As punishment for the current hunger strike, Israeli prison authorities have been withholding salt, which is necessary to sustain life. A decreased sodium intake can hasten death. Administrative detention and withholding salt both are against international humanitarian law.
At least 80 of the prisoners are near death, shackled to hospital beds and being threatened with forced feeding, which has been classified as torture by the World Medical Association. The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and other UN agencies have condemned the practice.
On Monday, members of the Knesset passed the first reading of a bill to permit forced feeding, which has been prohibited by international law since 1975, according to published reports. The second and third readings are on a fast track and will be voted on next week.
This can only be prevented by public responses.
AMP finds the resounding silence by the United States to be absolutely deplorable and in direct contradiction to our values of due process and the protection of human rights, which we cherish.
Please participate in:
* Day of Fasting *
* National Call-In Day *
* Social Media Campaign *
AMP calls on its supporters to fast in solidarity with the prisoners. We also call on all those who support justice to call the office of Assistant Secretary of State Anne W. Patterson, Bureau of Near East Affairs, and demand the US intervene to compel Israel to drop the force feeding bill, to end administrative detention and to release all political prisoners immediately.
Tuesday, June 17, 2014
Day of Fasting: Please join AMP in a day of solidarity by fasting from sunrise to sunset. Email us a picture of yourself holding a sign that says, “I am fasting in solidarity with Palestinian hunger strikers.”
National Call In Day: Call US Assistant Secretary of State Anne W. Patterson from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time to ask the United States to force Israel to comply with international law by dropping the force feeding bill, ending administrative detention and releasing political prisoners.
Call the office of Anne W. Patterson, Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs at 202.647.7209, and
Deputy Director of Palestine/Israel affairs Chris Hegadorn at 202.647.3672.
State your name and the city and state where you reside. Be polite but firm.
State Israel’s use of administrative detention is against international law and deprives Palestinians of the right of due process.
The forced feeding of hungers strikers has been prohibited by international law since 1975.
The World Medical Association has classified the forced feeding of hunger strikers as torture.
U.S. support of Israel 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 immediately end administrative detention and release all Palestinian prisoners.
Once you call, please email AMP at [email protected] with Hunger Strike in the subject line. Please tell us when you called and what state you reside in.
Social Media Campaign: Sign our Thunderclap campaign to add your voice targeting the US State Department, US Secretary of State John Kerry and President Barak Obama, and then support the Thunderclap by joining our Twitter campaign on Tuesday, from 1-2 p.m. Eastern time.
US Secretary of State John Kerry @JohnKerry
President Barack Obama @WhiteHouse
US Department of State @StateDept
#NoForceFeeding #EndAD #PalHunger
Hunger Striking Palestinian political prisoners near death! #NoForceFeeding #EndAD @JohnKerry @StateDept @WhiteHouse
Supporting Israel in face of prisoner human rights abuses hurts America @JohnKerry @WhiteHouse @StateDept #NoForceFeeding
Americans believe in due process. Why support Israel’s use of administrative detention? #EndAD @WhiteHouse @JohnKerry
Force feeding is torture and against international law. Tell Israel NO! #NoForceFeeding #EndAD @JohnKerry @StateDept @WhiteHouse
Israel ignores American values of due process, justice and liberty. Tell Israel to release political prisoners #EndAD @JohnKerry @WhiteHouse @StateDept