Iran calls on Israeli occupiers to end arbitrary detentions

October 25, 2020 - 16:32

TEHRAN – Iran’s Foreign Ministry has called on the Tel Aviv regime to stop arbitrarily arresting the Palestinians and free hundreds of them who have been unjustly detained by Israel.

“For 3 months, Maher al-Akras has been detained without any charges. Despite his hunger strike & international outcry, Israeli regime has refused to end his unjustified detention. The occupiers must end arbitrary detentions & free him & 100s of Palestinians unjustly held,” the Foreign Ministry said in a tweet on Sunday.

Al-Akhras, 49, was arrested near the Palestinian city of Nablus and placed in what came to be known as administrative detention, a policy that the Israeli regime uses to hold suspected Palestinian people without charge. The Palestinian people have long sought to put an end to the policy of administrative detention, which they see as an Israeli ploy to suppress those who demand their rights.

The policy allows Israel to hold the Palestinian people indefinitely without trial, sometimes for years. Hundreds of Palestinians are being held in administrative detention.

Al-Akhras has gone on a hunger strike since his arrest in early July to protest the policy. In early September, he was transferred to Kaplan Hospital, south of Tel Aviv.

After nearly three months of hunger strike, the health condition of the Palestinian political prisoner has deteriorated to a critical situation, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross.

“More than 85 days into the hunger strike, we are concerned about potentially irreversible health consequences,” said Yves Giebens, the head of the ICRC’s health department in the occupied Palestinian territories.

“From a medical perspective, he is entering a critical phase,” Giebens added in a statement.

“The ICRC encourages the patient, his representatives and the competent authorities involved to find a solution that will avoid any loss of life,” the statement said.

Tasbeeh al-Akhras, one of the detainee’s six children, said doctors at Israel’s Kaplan Medical Center have warned the family that her father faces organ failure and will soon die, the Guardian reported.

“His situation is critical, he is in continuous pain,” she said. “He asked to be moved to a Palestinian hospital so he could stop his strike, but the Israelis refused. Freedom is the only way to stop his strike … He should be with us.”

Despite his grave health conditions, Israel’s high court refused to release al-Akhras. Instead, it agreed not to extend his arbitrary detention beyond November.

The United Nations has called on Israel to immediately release al-Akhras, warning that the political prisoner is in a “very frail condition.”

“Mr. Al-Akhras is now in very frail condition, having gone without food for 89 days,” said Michael Lynk, UN special rapporteur for human rights in Palestine. “Recent visits by doctors to his hospital bed in Israel indicate that he is on the verge of suffering major organ failure, and some damage might be permanent.”

The UN special rapporteur also denounced the administrative detention as a policy that goes against democracy.

“Administrative detention is an anathema in any democratic society that follows the rule of law,” Lynk said. “When the democratic state arrests and detains someone, it is required to charge the person, present its evidence in an open trial, allow for a full defense and try to persuade an impartial judiciary of its allegations beyond a reasonable doubt.”

He added, “Administrative detention, in contrast, allows a state to arrest and detain a person without charges, without a trial, without knowing the evidence against her or him, and without a fair judicial review. It is a penal system that is ripe for abuse and maltreatment.”

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