Monday, March 5, 2012

Shalabi Enters 19th Day on Hunger Strike… Details of Israeli Brutal Treatment


The 28 years old Palestinian prisoner Hana Yahya Shalabi entered her 19th day of hunger strike. Recently, Ofer's military court offered to reduce Shalabi's six months administrative detention by two months.

Shalabi however, rejected this decision and she is determined to continue with the strike, until her demands are achieved. She is hoping that her hunger strike will bring an end to Israel's administrative detention policy, a policy that remains in place from the period of British mandate, which allows for indefinite detention without charges or trials.

The lawyer of the Palestinian Prisoners' Ministry, Iraki, who met the prisoner in the Israeli prison Sharon, described Shalabi's health condition as deteriorated, exhausted, and unable to speak. Iraki described that her face was pale but she is determined to continue with the open hunger strike.

Shalabi told the lawyer the details of her arrest since February 16, 2012. She said the Israeli soldiers raided Burqin village, near the West Bank town of Jenin at 2 a.m. broke into her house, grabbed her while she was sleeping and dragged her to the military jeep. She refused [to have a male soldier touch her] and asked for a female soldier, but the soldier beat her in front of her mother and sister and then they blindfolded her.

She was taken to Salim military prison and admitted to one of the rooms. One of the soldiers attempted to strip-search her, and she refused and began to scream. The soldier summoned five others and started to beat her, putting her face on the ground. One soldier in particular stepped on her neck and severally beat her.

Hana Shalabi explained that one soldier put her head between his legs so another soldier could strip-search her. They proceeded to search her body as she screamed; the soldiers neglected her pain and refused her request to bring a female soldier.

Afterward, they searched her aggressively, putting bandages on the wounds that were caused by the beatings, before transferring her to Sharon prison. She was placed in section number 2, the department of female criminals as a punishment for being on hunger strike. She experienced solitary confinement for one week.

The director of the legal unit in the Palestinian Prisoners' Society, Jawad bolus, said that an appeal was submitted to the Israeli Court against this decision. He also said the court was at fault even if they agreed to reduced her incarceration by 50 days from the arrest period, considering the administrative detention of Shalabi as a political, vindictive arrest and not being under security pretexts as the Israeli court claims.

Bolus called for an emergency session to discuss the appeal that was submitted, asking the court to accept it. He also blamed the Israeli political parties and put the responsibility on them for the life of Shalabi. He claimed that legal procedures will be taken to release Shalabi, and supposed that a date for new hearing session would be set today.

The reasons behind the hunger strike of Hana Shalabi's are:

1- To end the policy of the administrative detention and continue with the strike.
2- To protest against the brutal and humiliating treatment and the assaults that she was subjected to during her arrest and interrogation sessions.

Iraki explained that Shalabi was transferred to the prison's high security section after she finished her period in solitary confinement. She rejected treatment from the prison's administration and refused to drink water.

Iraki said the female officer responsible for the prisoners said that the prisons' administration is not responsible for the law of the administrative detention, and they are not the ones to solve Shalabi's problem. The Israeli intelligence services are responsible for that decision not the prisons' administration.

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