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Palestinians Protest Indefinite Detention in Israel

Posted on Feb 21, 2013
AP/Majdi Mohammed

Masked Palestinians sit by burning tires Thursday outside Ofer, an Israeli prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah.

More than 60 people have been injured in violent confrontations between Palestinians and the Israeli army in the West Bank, a Palestinian humanitarian group said. Demonstrators were calling for the release of four Palestinian prisoners who are on hunger strikes.

Young people who had gathered outside Ofer prison near Ramallah threw stones and petrol bombs toward Israeli soldiers, who returned fire with rubber bullets, tear gas and possibly live rounds.

The prisoners claim they have been detained without charge. Israel says the men pose a threat.

The hunger strikers are named Samer Issawi, Tariq Qaadan, Jafar Ezzedine and Ayman Sharawna. Issawi has been on and off the strike for more than 200 days and is said to weigh less than 110 pounds.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.


As of December 2012, Israel held 4,517 Palestinians in its jails.

Of these 1,031 are being held until the conclusion of legal proceedings, 178 are in administrative detention (without charge or trial) and 170 are under 18 years of age.

Administrative detention is a system under which a military court can order suspects to be detained indefinitely, subject to renewal every six months by the court, without trial or charge. The Israeli military says it uses administrative detention when it fears an immediate risk to security or to protect informants.

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