The Palestinian community and their supporters and friends in Cologne and Bonn, Germany organized a protest in the main square in Cologne, working with the European Alliance in Defense of Palestinian Detainees, on 15 August 2015, demanding freedom for imprisoned Palestinian lawyer Muhammed Allan. Allan is now in a coma and in critical condition after over 60 days of open hunger strike.
The protest also denounced Israeli terror against the Palestinian people, including the burning of the Dawabsheh family in Dura village near Nablus. The protesters raised banners calling for the immediate end of the use of administrative detention without charge or trial, under which Allan has been imprisoned since November 2014.
The protesters distributed information in German and Arabic about the occupation policies of killing, intimidation and mass incarceration, demanding international action, including by European states, to pressure the occupation to release Allan and save the lives of Palestinian prisoners. Protesters also urged building the movement for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. Events are taking place in Berlin and Essen, Germany as well as in Oslo, Norway.
The European Alliance for the Defense of Palestinian Detainees also issued a statement (below) in support of Muhammed Allan and Palestinian political prisoners on hunger strike, urging action:
In light of the increasing Zionist onslaught of colonial settlement against the Palestinian people, and in parallel with the increasing attacks by settlers on civilian families, as in the case of the burning of the Dawabsheh home and the killing of the child Ali and his father Saad, we see the increasing violence and torture of the brave prisoners.
The prison administration has retreated from many concessions won by Palestinian prisoners through long years of struggle in prisons, and Israel has reneged on many agreements, including through the re-arrest of numerous prisoners released in the Wafa al-Ahrar prisoner exchange for Gilad Shalit, as well as the recent re-arrest of former hunger striker Samer Issawi.
The only means before the prisoners to achieve their demands from the prison administration is to struggle with their bodies – with the empty stomachs and salt and water, the prisoners resist the occupiers, struggling to achieve the most basic human rights and humane treatment guaranteed them by the Geneva Conventions….
Instead of improving the conditions of detention and releasing administrative detainees held without trial for months and years, the occupation authorities approved a force-feeding law to counter the strength of this type of strike.
The European Alliance for the Defense of Palestinian Detainees demanded that European governments, civil society institutions and human rights associations and organizations act quickly to save the lives of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails and not to abandon them to become victims of the policies of repression and physical liquidation practiced by the Israeli Prison Authority directly and under cover of the occupation government.
The Coalition calls on the Arab and Palestinian communities and the friends of the Palestinian people to build broad movements to support the Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails waging a heroic battle to extract their legitimate rights and win their demands, guaranteed by human rights conventions and the rights of prisoners of war.