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Israel to hand over long-time Jordanian prisoner after hunger strike

Feb. 3, 2016 4:25 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 3, 2016 4:25 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities will transfer a Jordanian national who went on hunger strike after completing a 16-year sentence in Israeli prison over to Jordanian authorities on Thursday, a lawyer from the Palestinian Prisoners' Society said.

The lawyer said Israel's Prison Service announced on Wednesday that Akram Zuhra would be released.

Zuhra had been on hunger strike since Jan. 23, demanding his release after serving out his sentence.

Israeli authorities are reportedly in coordination with Jordanian authorities to organize the detainee's transfer through Allenby crossing.

Israeli authorities have continued to hold another Jordanian national, Abdullah Nuh Abu Jaber, who was detained on July 18 last year and sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Jaber has been on hunger strike since Nov. 22 with the exception of a three day break between Dec. 27 and Dec. 30, when he temporarily ended his strike after Israeli authorities allegedly agreed to a number of his demands.

Hanan al-Khatib, a lawyer with the Prisoners and Former Prisoners' Affairs Committee said at the time that Jaber reinstated his hunger strike after being transferred from HaEmek Medical Center -- where he was being treated after already having been on hunger strike for 47 days -- back to al-Ramla prison hospital.

Jaber said the transfer was against the conditions of the reported deal between the Jordanian and Israeli authorities.

After Jaber reinstated his hunger strike, he said the Israeli intelligence officer who had initially brokered the deal with him apologized and informed him that his demands would not be met.

Jaber is demanding that Israel continue his treatment at Affula hospital, allow his family to visit, allow him to contact the Jordanian ambassador, and eventually release him to Jordanian authorities.

Jabers lawyer told Ma'an on Dec. 31 that Jaber had since been moved to solitary confinement at al-Ramla prison.

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