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Group calls for Muhammad Allan's release on 20th day of hunger strike

June 28, 2017 9:52 P.M. (Updated: June 29, 2017 12:03 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- As Muhammad Allan entered his 20th day on hunger strike in Israeli custody on Wednesday, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Center for Studies called on Palestinians and international groups to do more to support the Palestinian prisoner.

The head of the center, Rafaat Hamdouna, called for humanitarian organizations, Palestinian factions, and media to increase pressure on Israel to obtain Allan’s release.

Allan, a lawyer from the Nablus-area village of Einabus in the northern occupied West Bank, had been released from prison in November 2015 after a year-long stint in administrative detention -- Israel’s widely condemned policy of internment without charge or trial -- during which time he carried out a grueling 66-day hunger strike in protest of his detention.

An Israeli military court charged Allan with “incitement” on social media, prompting his father to say at the time that Israeli forces “have been after his son to detain him and take revenge on him since the day he was released last year from administrative detention.”

Israeli authorities have justified their crackdown on Palestinian social media activity, arguing that a wave of unrest that began in October 2015 was stoked by online “incitement,” though Palestinians have instead pointed chiefly to the frustration and despair brought on by Israel's 50-year military occupation of the Palestinian territory and the absence of a political horizon as reasons for acts of violence.

Suppression of Palestinian freedom of expression in recent months has also seen bookstores shuttered, while activists, journalists, novelists, and poets have been detained.

Allan’s strike comes in the wake of a 40-day hunger strike carried out by hundreds of Palestinian prisoners denouncing the infringement of their basic human rights in Israeli custody. Despite Palestinian officials and leaders of the hunger strike declaring victory, IPS has repeatedly denied that it negotiated with the prisoners or acceded to any of their demands.
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