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Israel releases Khader Adnan for 2nd time in 2 days after rearrest

July 14, 2015 2:16 A.M. (Updated: July 31, 2015 6:02 P.M.)
Adnan was greeted on Sunday to a hero's welcome in his home village of Arraba near Jenin. (MaanImages/File)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Israeli authorities released Khader Adnan for the second time in two days late Monday, after they briefly rearrested the veteran Palestinian hunger striker in East Jerusalem a day after he was released from 11 months in prison.

The Palestinian liaison office had Adnan transferred from Ofer detention center in Israel to Beitunia west of Ramallah at around 1 a.m., and he was then taken by car to his home village of Arraba in southern Jenin.

He was detained on Monday evening as he was heading into Jerusalem's Old City to take part in Laylat al-Qader prayers at Al-Aqsa mosque compound and Israeli police found that he did not have the necessary permits.

Adnan later told Ma'an that he had visited four homes in East Jerusalem before he was detained, including that of Palestinian prisoner Samer al-Issawi, which he stopped at to check on the health of Issawi's mother.

He also visited Jawad Bolous, the chief lawyer for the Palestinian Prisoner's Society, who at the end of last month secured Adnan's release from Israeli custody.

Adnan said that he and his wife had both wanted to spend Laylat al-Qader in a holy place, and so they had crossed into East Jerusalem to pray at Al-Aqsa mosque and visit their loved ones.

Laylat al-Qader, meaning the Night of Destiny, takes place toward the end of the holy month of Ramadan, and according to Muslim belief marks the night the first verses of the Quran were revealed to the prophet Muhammad.

Adnan said he spent some time wandering the streets of East Jerusalem before he was arrested.

An Israeli police spokesperson told Ma'an that he had "entered Jerusalem illegally."

He was held for several hours for questioning before the Israeli authorities decided to release him.

The Palestinian liaison office said they were satisfied with Adnan's health following the brief detention.

Thousands of Palestinians were expected to visit Al-Aqsa mosque compound to mark Laylat al-Qader on Monday, although Israel laid down stringent access restrictions ahead of it.

All Palestinian men between the ages of 12 and 30 were denied entry into occupied East Jerusalem, while men between the ages of 30 and 50 required Israeli permits.

Women between 16 and 30 also required permits to enter the city.

The Israeli authorities previously agreed to release Adnan in the early hours of Sunday after they struck a deal to end a 55-day hunger strike he began in June to protest the Israeli practice of administrative detention.

He was detained in July last year and sentenced to administrative detention for the 10th time in his life.

His hunger strike, which brought him near death by the time it concluded last month, was the second he had carried out, following a 66-day long hunger strike in 2012 that also ended in his release.

The deal struck with Israel on June 29 was only possible after Adnan withdrew his demand that Israel agree to never place him under administrative detention again.
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