Palestinian terror suspect Mohammad Allaan said Saturday he would renew his hunger strike if he is rearrested by Israel.
Allaan, who refused to eat for 65 days to protest his administrative detention, and who was released after his deteriorating condition caused him brain damage, told a Hamas journal: “I am free at the moment. If the Israeli occupation arrests me again, I will return to the hunger strike until they put an end to the travesty I am suffering, as are hundreds of administrative prisoners.”
He added that the practice of detaining suspects without trial while refusing them the right to a lawyer and denying them visits from their family must be stopped “immediately.”
Allaan was speaking from his hospital bed at Ashkelon’s Barzilai hospital.
The High Court of Justice on Wednesday suspended Allaan’s administrative detention — a special anti-terror measure that allows imprisonment without trial on terrorism charges — after tests showed that he had sustained brain damage as a result of his two-month fast. There were conflicting reports as to whether the damage was reversible.
The temporary suspension of his status as prisoner was enough to allow Allaan to end his hunger strike, family members said.
Security officials believe Allaan, 31, is tied to the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization.
Right-wing lawmakers and ministers reacted furiously to the High Court decision, with some accusing the court of setting a dangerous precedent that would lead to the release of other security prisoners being held in Israel.
On Friday Allaan said in a video that his strike had been successful, and thanked his Israeli Arab “brothers” for their support.
“I thank everyone one by one, all those who stood by our side and by the side of the family, in front of the hospital and everywhere, to the brothers inside (Israel) … I kiss them on the forehead and on the hands for this stance,” Haaretz quoted Allaan as saying, in a message in Arabic to Israel’s Arab population.
Israel passed a controversial law last month allowing authorities to force-feed hunger-striking prisoners, but doctors at Barzilai and elsewhere have said they will refuse to comply with the directive.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report
The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.
We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.
Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.