Hunger-striking imprisoned Palestinian journalist Mohammad Al-Qeeq has rejected the “suspension” of his administrative detention order by the Israeli Supreme Court due to his severe health crisis. He remains captive, under Israeli custody, and forbidden from moving to a Palestinian or other hospital. Al-Qeeq, 33, has announced that he rejects this action, as he is demanding his freedom and the cancellation of his administrative detention without charge or trial – not its “suspension” and reimposition at a later date while being held prisoner in an Israeli hospital. His hunger strike continues and he is now on his 72nd day of strike. Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network urges all supporters of Palestine, justice and freedom to take action to stand with Mohammed al-Qeeq at this critically important moment and demand his freedom.
Furthermore, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Affairs Commission reported that al-Qeeq reiterated his rejection of receiving vitamins or any form of nutrition or medical examinations until he receives his freedom and an end to administrative detention, and stated that he will only accept treatment from Palestinian hospitals. The Commission also stated that al-Qeeq said that the Supreme Court “suspension” is an attempt to circumvent and undermine his legitimate resistance to the inhumane, arbitrary and immoral practive of administrative detention and an attempt to silence the growing international movement against administrative detention without charge or trial.
The statement also noted that al-Qeeq’s continued detention is an attack on his freedom of opinion and expression as a journalist, and that this decision only underlines the Israeli judiciary’s role as part and parcel of the same system of occupation and oppression as the Shin Bet and the Israeli military.
Al-Qeeq is one of over 670 Palestinian prisoners held in administrative detention without charge or trial, among approximately 7000 Palestinian prisoners total in Israeli jails.
In August 2015, hunger-striking Palestinian lawyer Muhammad Allan, held like Al-Qeeq without charge or trial in Israeli prisons, suspended his own hunger strike after a similar order followed a demonstration of brain damage during his hunger strike. Following a month of treatment and his discharge from the hospital, Allan was immediately re-arrested and held in administrative detention until the end of the original order against him, 4 November. Allan was then released and has participated in solidarity actions in support of Al-Qeeq.
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network urges all supporters of Palestinian prisoners and of freedom for Mohammed al-Qeeq to continue to escalate the pressure until al-Qeeq wins his freedom. After 72 days of hunger strike, his health crisis is severe, and the Israeli state is only attempting new maneuvers to suppress his struggle for freedom. It is urgent, now more than ever, to organize and act to demand real freedom and justice for Mohammed al-Qeeq and all Palestinian prisoners.
We urge you to take the streets in protest in New York, Berlin, Montreal and other cities and escalate the pressure on the Israeli state to free this Palestinian journalist held without charge or trial, end administrative detention, and free all Palestinian prisoners.
1. Contact government officials and demand that they break their silence on Al-Qeeq and support for Israeli violations of Palestinian rights. In the United States, call the Israel Foreign Service Desk
1-202-647-3672 and the White House – 202-456-1111. Demand action on al-Qeeq’s case and an end to aid to Israel. In the UK, call UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Philip Hammond, MP, +44 20 7008 1500. In Canada, call Foreign Minister Stephane Dion: 613-996-5789.
2. Protest at an Israeli consulate or embassy (or federal building, G4S office or public square) and demand freedom for Mohammed al-Qeeq. Join the protests scheduled in New York, Berlin and Montreal or organize your own. Raise the issue of this case publicly and distribute information – this flyer is available for you to distribute at protests in your community. Find your closest Israeli consulate: http://embassy.goabroad.com/embassies-of/israel. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org inform us of your action – we will publicize and share news with the prisoners.
3. Boycott, Divest and Sanction. Palestinians have urged an international boycott of Israeli goods and institutions – and corporations that profit from occupation , like G4S, the world’s largest private security company, that sells security equipment to Israeli prisons, checkpoints and police training centers – directly profiting from the occupation that destroys Palestinian lives. At the same time G4S profits from occupation, institutions like the United Nations continue to do business with it. Go to addameer.org/UNdropG4S to take action!