Under a policy called "administrative detention," Israel imprisons Palestinians without public charges.
Khader Adnan has refused to eat since he was detained by the Israeli army in the middle of the night on December 17. Almost 60 days later, he is close to death. Palestinian protesters have gathered at the prison where he is detained and at his parents' home, with other protests taking place throughout the occupied territories in the West Bank. At the prison yesterday, dozens of protesters threw rocks at Israeli police, who fired tear gas back in response.
4,000 other Palestinian prisoners have started similar hunger strikes, refusing food or drink. Adnan is one of approximately 300 Palestinians held without charge under the administrative detention policy which Israel says involves cases where the security of the state is threatened. Adnan is a former spokesman for the group Islamic Jihad, a terrorist group that has carried out attacks on Israel over the years.
Under the administrative detention policy, no charges are made publicly, leaving lawyers for those who are detained without any information.
Many in the West Bank say that the administrative detention policy had become a forgotten issue. In the past 11 years, Israel has reportedly issued more than 20,000 administrative detention orders against Palestinians.