Samer Issawi, long-term hunger striker and freed Palestinian prisoner, has been re-arrested by occupation forces on June 23, part of a massive attack on Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, including hundreds of raids and arrests. Take action now to demand his freedom, end the mass arrests and raids!
Issawi’s 266 day hunger strike captured the attention of the world. Released from Israeli prisons in the “Wafa al-Ahrar” prisoner exchange with over 1000 other Palestinians in exchange for captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, he had been re-arrested for allegedly leaving the municipal borders of Jerusalem, which the occupation charged violated his release. Following his 277 day hunger strike, pressure due to his strike pushed the Israeli state to concede its attempt to re-impose his original sentence, and after serving 17 months in prison, he was released in December 2013.
The occupation has not stopped its harassment of the Issawi family following Samer’s widely-publicized hunger strike. Shireen Issawi, a Palestinian lawyer, Samer’s sister and the spokesperson for his campaign during his hunger strike, is currently imprisoned and awaiting a military trial in a case targeting Palestinian lawyers. Shireen’s case, which has also included threats to Samer’s brothers and a number of Palestinian lawyers who represent prisoners, is attempting to cut prisoners’ communications to the outside world by prosecuting lawyers for allegedly passing information between prisoners and Palestinian political and resistance organizations outside.
Since June 14, occupation authorities have arrested at least 471 Palestinians in raids and mass arrests throughout the West Bank. Former political prisoners have been particularly targeted, and at least 52 of the prisoners released in the Wafa al-Ahrar exchange have now been re-arrested. Five Palestinians have been killed, universities raided and Gaza bombed under the pretext of the disappearance of three settlers near occupied al-Khalil.
2. Write to the International Committee of the Red Cross and demand it fulfill its responsibilities to Palestinian prisoners and publicly condemn the mass arrest raids, attacks and the policy of administrative detention which is in clear violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, as stipulated by the ICRC mandate to protect international humanitarian law. Email the ICRC, whose humanitarian mission includes monitoring the conditions of prisoners, at JER_jerusalem@icrc.org.
3. Organize a protest or action in your city against the attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. Demonstrate outside an Israeli consulate or embassy in your city.