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Shalabi to continue hunger strike despite sentence reduction

March 4, 2012 7:00 P.M. (Updated: March 6, 2012 8:18 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) -- Hana Shalabi said Sunday that she will continue her hunger strike despite an announcement by Israel's Ofer military court that her prison time will be reduced by two months.

Lawyer Fadi Qawasmi visited Shalabi at Hasharon prison and informed her of the court's decision on Sunday to reduce her imprisonment time by two months.

Shalabi told him that she would continue her hunger strike protest in order to achieve her demands to end administrative detention.

She has been on hunger strike for 18 days and her condition is said to have worsened recently.

Addameer prisoners society says that Shalabi was issued a 6-month administrative detention order on Feb. 23.

Ofer military court refused Qawasmi's request to call witnesses to speak about the assault of Shalabi during her interrogation, he said.

Qawasmi also requested that a Shin Bet representative, the military commander who led the arrest and the soldier who carried out the strip search on Shalabi be called to the stand.

The court refused his demands.

Lawyer from the prisoners society Jawad Boulos said on Tuesday that Israeli court officials claimed that the reason for Shalabi's administrative detention is because she is considered a threat to Israel’s security and safety of its people.

They also claimed that she planned military actions right after she was released.

Hana Shalabi, from the northern West Bank village Burqin, is being held without charge since her detention on Feb. 16. She announced her hunger strike immediately after soldiers seized her from the family's Jenin-district home.

Shalabi was freed in October 2011 when Hamas secured the release of more than 1,000 Palestinians in Israeli jails in exchange for a captured Israeli soldier.

She had spent 25 months in administrative detention, under procedures that allow Israel to detain Palestinians for renewable terms of six months without pressing charges, using laws dating back to the British Mandate period.

Israel is holding 309 Palestinians in administrative detention, according to figures by prisoners rights group Addameer. There are currently six Palestinian woman in Israeli custody.
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