Israeli armed guards stormed the prison sections of the Palestinian prisoners of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine on Tuesday, 14 June, assaulting prisoners, imposing sanctions, and confiscating electrical appliances. This attack came after the PFLP prisoners announced their first of three scheduled two-day hunger strikes demanding the freedom of Bilal Kayed.
Kayed, 34, was scheduled for release on Monday, 13 June after the expiration of his 14 and one-half year sentence in Israeli prison; instead, as his family waited at the checkpoint to receive him, he was ordered to six months administrative detention – imprisonment without charge or trial. Prisoners have declared a series of escalations and protests inside the prisons demanding Kayed’s freedom and an end to administrative detention.
The attack on striking prisoners came as crowds took to the street in occupied Nablus, as the National Committee to Support the Prisoners marched for freedom for Kayed and his fellow prisoners. Maher Harb, a PFLP representative, spoke about Kayed and the ongoing struggle inside the prison; he described Kayed as a “strong and sophisticated militant leader with outstanding commitment to the Palestinian people.” Speaking about the prisoners’ campaign inside the prisons, he said that “they will not rest and will resist so long as this unjust decision remains.”