Posts Tagged ‘International Committee of the Red Cross’

 

 

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As hundreds of Palestinians rallied in Gaza today to demand that Israel release Palestinian administrative detainee Khader Adnan, Yassar Salah, a 17-year veteran of Israel’s prison system, spoke about Adnan’s 60-day hunger strike and his own reasons for joining it.

“We are on hunger strike to show our sympathy and solidarity with Sheikh Khader Adnan, who is battling to overcome Israel’s system of administrative detention,” he told me in the protest tent outside Gaza’s International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) compound.

“Khader Adnan is fighting a just battle,” he said. “For that reason, he is continuing his struggle without paying attention to his own suffering. Losing his health, or even his life, doesn’t matter as much as ending injustice. Adnan is a hero. Freedom has a price, and he is paying the price of his freedom.”

Salah, who launched his hunger strike with ten other Gaza Strip residents on February 11, has taken similar actions before. “I hunger struck in prison several times, for 15, 18, and 20 days,” he said. “This is nothing new for me. I assure you that in this battle, we fight with our wills, not our bodies. By our hunger, by our pains, we are achieving our goals.”

“The Israelis humiliate their prisoners,” he told me when I asked about his years in detention. “They prevent us from continuing our education, or meeting out attorneys. Many prisoners are prevented from receiving family visits. Some are even isolated from their fellow prisoners. Prisoners are kept in cells alone for months, or even years, without any contact with the outside world. Sometimes guards entered our rooms in the middle of the night, searching for nothing, only to torment us.”

What did he and his fellow hunger strikers hope to accomplish, I asked him? “People here are showing sympathy and solidarity with Khader and his struggle,” he replied. “But the levels of sympathy and solidarity are not enough. We want more, among our people and outside.”

What kind of sympathy and solidarity? “They can organize sit-ins, maybe something athletic, or artistic, or political,” he said. “We want to see a variety of activities to express the message of Khader and the Palestinian people. The most important thing is for people to adopt his case as their own. The world must take action to stop his shameful treatment.”

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An ongoing hunger strike and encampment outside the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Gaza continued to demand that Israel release political prisoner Khader Adnan, now on his 55th day without food and believed to be nearing death.

Take Urgent Action: Day 53 of Khader Adnan’s Hunger Strike
Take Action for Hunger Striking Palestinian Prisoner Khader Adnan!
Palestinian hunger striker’s life at risk: Khader Adnan
Demand the Immediate Release of Khader Adnan
Khader Adnan’s life at risk as He enters day 54 of hunger Strike – since 17 December 2011

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Dozens of Palestinians in Gaza continued a hunger strike in support of political prisoner Khader Adnan as he entered his 54th day of refusing food from his Israeli captors.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012
International Committee of the Red Cross
Gaza, Palestine

Take Urgent Action: Day 53 of Khader Adnan’s Hunger Strike
Take Action for Hunger Striking Palestinian Prisoner Khader Adnan!
Palestinian hunger striker’s life at risk: Khader Adnan
Demand the Immediate Release of Khader Adnan
Khader Adnan’s life at risk as He enters day 54 of hunger Strike – since 17 December 2011

The International Committee of the Red Cross introduces a photo essay entitled “Gaza: health care is in danger”:

There are restrictions on importing medical supplies into the Gaza Strip, leading to frequent shortages of essential disposables and drugs. This is having a serious impact on thousands of patients, especially those with kidney failure or cancer. (emphasis added)

“There are,” are there? Well, what can you do? Sometimes, unfortunate things just happen. Hurricanes, earthquakes, sieges …

Concerning the hundreds of Gaza patients whose lives these mysterious restrictions have ended, Philip Weiss offers the ICRC’s apparent explanation: “They up and died!”

The ICRC’s Mission Statement claims that the body “endeavours to prevent suffering by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles.” Keep up the good work, guys.