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Israeli Supreme Court Rejects Palestinian Hunger Striker’s Bid to End Detention Without Trial

HeadlineAug 25, 2022

In the occupied West Bank, a Palestinian hunger striker held by Israel is in critical condition and could die at any moment, according to the doctor who examined him earlier this week. Khalil Awawdeh has been on a hunger strike since March in protest of his so-called administrative detention, the Israeli policy of holding Palestinians without charge for up to years at a time. Awawdeh spoke to reporters from his hospital bed Wednesday.

Khalil Awawdeh: “My health condition is extensively deteriorating. I feel I am internally collapsing. I feel that my body is consuming itself internally in a strange manner.”

On Sunday, Israel’s Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Awawdeh’s lawyers demanding his immediate release due to his failing health. His family called the court’s decision a “death sentence.” This is Khalil’s father, Mohammed Awawdeh.

Mohammed Awawdeh: “When we first saw his picture on his lawyer’s camera, we were surprised and shocked … over his health condition. He now weighs 38 kilograms. He used to weigh 86. So, what can he be other than skin and bones?”

Meanwhile, over 50 Israeli civil society groups have condemned Israel’s raid on seven Palestinian civil society rights groups in the occupied West Bank last week. Israeli soldiers confiscated items and files before leaving behind notices declaring the groups unlawful. In October, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz labeled six of the groups “terrorist organizations.” Many international observers — including nine European nations — have condemned the designation. Even the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency rejected tying the Palestinian NGOs to terrorism in a classified assessment, according to The Guardian newspaper.

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