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Israel denies family of hospitalized hunger striker right to visit
Published Friday 30/05/2014 (updated) 02/06/2014 14:58
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(MaanImages/file)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli prison officials on Thursday rejected a request made by the family of a hunger striker to visit him in hospital, nearly a month after he stopped eating in protest against his detention without trial.

The Palestinian prisoners' rights association Addameer filed a request for the family of Abdulrazzaq Farraj, 51, to visit him at Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba inside Israel, where he has been held since he was recently hospitalized.

Israeli prison officials said they were denying Farraj visitation rights until June 5, without providing further details.

Farraj has been held in Israeli administrative detention for a total of around nine years, and his most recent arrest was on Feb. 25 when he was placed under administrative detention for six months.

More than 100 Palestinian administrative detainees launched a hunger strike in late April in protest against their continued detention without trial or charge, a practice Israel in 2012 promised to put an end to outside of exceptional cases as part of a deal to end a previous hunger strike.

Since then, more than 100 others have joined the strike, and thousands have taken part in day-long solidarity strikes.

Farraj joined the hunger strike on May 1, and now his family is worried that his health conditions may be deteriorating quickly.

His son, Bassel, said that they have been banned from visiting him in the past, adding that he has not seen his father for two years.

Farraj's wife, meanwhile, said she feared for his life, and that she wanted to check on his health after being on a hunger strike for 29 days.

The Addameer association said that banning visitation is part of a policy of punishment by Israeli prison administrators that attempts to force detainees to end their strike.

More than 5,200 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli jails, according to the PLO, and over 800,000 Palestinians have been detained since 1967, representing more than 20 percent of the total population and 40 percent of all males in the occupied territories.

Under international law, it is illegal to transfer prisoners outside of the occupied territory in which they are detained, and the families of Palestinian prisoners' face many obstacles in obtaining permits to see their imprisoned relatives.
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1 ) Tobias / USA
31/05/2014 00:18
Israel grant more generously than prisoners deserve*, and family visits for hospitalized hunger strikers is NOT a "right". * Cable TV, internet, education, etc.

2 ) Sherri Munnerlyn / US
31/05/2014 02:34
What this is is collective punishment which is defined as a war crime under The Fourth Geneva Convention. Hunger strikes as a response to unlawful administrative detentions are 100% lawful, barring visitation rights as a response to the exercise of such lawful rights is 100% unlawful under intl law.

3 ) Paul / Canada
31/05/2014 05:50
Israel refuses to let the family see him because they are afraid. They are afraid of what condition the family will find him in and of what they may say to the media if they do. They are afraid because they know they are in the wrong. Israel can only keep covering its fetid, repugnant behavior against fellow humans for so long before nature devises a way to restore balance. Israel HAS to change or it will be done for them. What shape that change takes nobody knows.. just a matter of time.

4 ) US Soldier / USA
31/05/2014 21:01
Tobias USA; family visits is a right for everyone to visit their family members in a hospital the hunger strikers family makes important choices for his life in life threatening matters

5 ) Susan Shaw / UK
31/05/2014 23:37
Why are we not hearing more from the International Community about this? Administrative detention is wrong, refusing prisoners visitation rights is wrong. Hunger striking is a last resort. When will this end, when one or more of them dies? Where is the voice of humanity? Stop administrative detention now!!

6 ) Michael / Mexico
01/06/2014 04:27
According to their government they have nothing to hide, but if this is the case, why hide it?
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