Administrative detainees keep up court boycott as dozens ordered imprisoned without charge or trial

Over 450 Palestinians imprisoned without charge or trial under administrative detention orders in Israeli occupation prisons are continuing their boycott of Israeli military courts for the 45th day. They are demanding an end to the practice of administrative detention, a policy which particularly targets active Palestinians, community leaders and popular organizers.

As the boycott has continued, occupation courts continue to approve administrative detention orders without the presence of the prisoners; in other cases, military courts have attempted to coerce prisoners into breaking their boycott, holding them detained indefinitely. There are 450 administrative detainees out of a total of over 6,100 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails.

Asra Media Center noted comments by several administrative detainees about their commitment to the strike. “No one can minimize this action, which bangs on the walls of the tank with force. Our voice must be heard, and the Prison Service and its intelligence officials have been taken aback after the announcement of this action, because they do not want any prisoner to exercise their free will or create a force that stands in the way of their actions. So we see them threaten to use force, which is evidence that this move has affected them and they are facing an emergency,” said Mohammed, whose administrative detention was recently renewed for the third time.

Another administrative detainee, a Palestinian student named Ayman, said that boycotting the courts improves the psychological condition of Palestinian prisoners by supporting their dignity. “Prisoners on the way to the administrative detention court are depressed, because they know in advance that it is all a sham and a mock court in which the prisoner is taken back and forth with the same zero results. This affects the psyche of the prisoners and their family, which is waiting for the court to act. Despite their lack of optimism and hope, it could constitute a window to reduce the sentence or obtain a fundamental decision to not renew their order. The anticipation and anxiety that accompany each court hearing are eliminated, and instead the prisoner is exercising a victory over the jailer by refusing to recognize its courts.”

Palestinian lawyer Mahmoud al-Halabi said that 23 administrative detention orders were recently issued against Palestinian prisoners for periods ranging from two to six months. Administrative detention orders are issued on the basis of secret evidence and are indefinitely renewable; Palestinians can spend years at a time jailed under these orders.

Among the Palestinians targeted for administrative detention was Shadi Maali, the former hunger striker from Dheisheh refugee camp who was targeted in the middle of Bethlehem by disguised occupation soldiers. Shadi Maali engaged in a 40-day hunger strike against administrative detention with five fellow prisoners in 2015; his fellow former strikers Nidal Abu Aker and Ghassan Zawahreh have also been targeted for renewed persecution.

The prisoners who received the administrative detention orders are:

1. Mustafa Nael al-Tal, al-Khalil, 4 months, new order
2. Suhaib Mohammed Qufaisha, al-Khalil, 4 months, extension
3. Yehia Hassan Ladadwa, Ramallah, 4 months, extension
4. Shaker Khalil Tartir, Nablus, 6 months, new order
5. Ahmed Abdel-Karim Dar Mohammed, Ramallah, 3 months, extension
6. Shadi Issa Maali, Bethlehem, 6 months, new order
7. Ahmed Abdel-Fattah Naqib, Nablus, 6 months, new order
8. Mohammed Hussein al-Salameen, Ramallah, 5 months,
9. Ahmad Adnan Salman, Nablus, 2 months, extension
10. Amir Nizar Khawaja, Ramallah, 4 months, extension
11. Muatassim Billah Jawi, al-Khalil, 4 months, extension
12. Adnan Mohammed al-Ja’bari, al-Khalil, 3 months, extension
13. Ayad Jamal al-Hareimi, Bethehem, 6 months, extension
14. Hammad Ahmed Abu Maria, al-Khalil, 4 months, extension
15. Musa Ahmed Bulbul, Jenin, 4 months, extension
16. Hussam Omar, Ramallah, 6 months, new order
17. Noureddine Abdel-Rahman Arouri, Ramallah, 6 months, new order
18. Mohammed Muhannad Ya’quba, Jenin, 4 months, new order
19. Mohammed Bader al-Wafi, Jenin, 4 months, new order
20. Ibrahim Kamel Shalabi, Jenin, 4 months, new order
21. Basil Munir Abu Aliya, Ramallah, 4 months, new order
22. Ehab Adnan Salameh, Jenin, 4 months, new order
23. Munir Adnan Zahran, Ramallah, 6 months, new order