Israeli court refuses release of Palestinian hunger-striker Kayed Fasfous

Israeli court refuses release of Palestinian hunger-striker Kayed Fasfous
Palestinian detainee Kayed Fasfous has been on hunger strike for two months, protesting his detention without charges, as the Israeli military judiciary system has not yet ruled on his petition for release.
3 min read
West Bank
04 October, 2023
Kayed Fasfous has been refusing food in protest of his detention for two months [Getty]

On Monday, 2 October, an Israeli court refused to rule the release of Palestinian detainee Kayed Fasfous, who has been on hunger strike for two months, protesting his arbitrary detention without charges under the Israeli "Administrative Detention" system.

Fasfous's hearing on Monday before the Israeli Supreme Court was held upon a petition by Fafous's lawyer, which requested his release after his health witnessed severe deterioration last week—the court returned the case to the Israeli military appeal court to give a ruling.

"The occupation court decision is a sign of wanting to evade responsibility", Amani Sarahneh, spokesperson for the Palestinian Prisoners' Club, told The New Arab. "Throwing the case from one court to another only prolongs Fasfous's situation, and this is not the first time this has happened."

"Israeli supreme court did the exact same thing when Khader Adnan's lawyer petitioned his release during his last hunger strike, which resulted in his death", she added. "Palestinian leader Khader Adnan died in Israeli jails in May, after 86 days of a hunger strike protesting his detention.

"We haven't been able to know the exact condition of Kayed Fafous, as the last time his lawyer was allowed to visit him was back in August", noted Sarahneh. "By this time, a hunger striker's internal organs begin to fail, and this is what we fear Kayed Fasfous is going through now."

"The last time his lawyer visited him, he was already unable to walk and had difficulty speaking, and the Israeli court knows perfectly his situation and the risks at hand", she added.

Last Thursday, Israeli authorities transferred Fasfous from his detention place in the Asqalan prison to the Ramleh prison clinic, where Israel holds critically ill detainees.

On Wednesday, the Prisoners' Club accused Israeli authorities of making obstacles to lawyer visits to Fasfou in a statement. TNA learned that the Palestinian 'Addameer' human rights group also tried to visit Fasfous last week and did not obtain permission from Israeli authorities.

Kayed Fadfous was arrested in May and given an administrative detention order of six months without charges. Last year, Fasfous was also detained under "administrative detention", which was renewed several times. He was eventually released after a 131-day-long hunger strike, severely impacting his health.

Since the beginning of 2023, Israeli forces arrested some 2,600 Palestinians under the administrative detention system.

Around 5,100 Palestinians are currently held in Israeli jails, 1,200 under "administrative detention", including 20 minors and four women. Humann rights group say this marks the highest number of Palestinian administrative detainees since 2002. Around 80% of current administrative detainees in Israeli jails have been arrested previously.