Palestine: Awawda suspends strike after Israel agrees for jail release

Khalil Awawda, who was on a hunger strike for 172 days and was at risk of imminent death, is set to be released on October 2.

Palestinian prisoner Khalil Awawda on Wednesday suspended his hunger strike, which he started 172 days ago, after Israel agreed to his release in October.

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Palestinian Prisoners and Ex-Prisoners Affairs Authority said that the decision to suspend the strike came after reaching a written agreement to determine the ceiling of his administrative detention, and to release him on October 2.

According to the agreement, Awawda will remain in Asaf Harofeh hospital until he fully recovers, provided that he is released from the hospital and not return to prison, as his condition requires care and a long time to recover.

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A video circulated by Palestinian platforms showed the prisoner Awawda drinking the “first cup of tea” and giving a speech after announcing the suspension of his strike.

In his first comment on the agreement, Awawda thanked everyone who supported his case, and said that administrative detention is an unjust punishment, and that everyone deserves to sacrifice in order to get rid of him and gain freedom.

After suspending his strike, the mother of the victorious prisoner Khalil Awawda says, “Praise be to God, and thanks be to God, for God’s relief. May God help you, Khalil.”

The Commission for Detainees and Ex-Prisoners Affairs said that the detainee, Awawda, fought an epic battle, for which he sacrificed his flesh and life, and his recent pictures are the best proof of that.

Awawda, suffers from difficult health conditions, severe weight loss, inability to move, and a clear decline in the work of the kidneys, heart and lungs, according to the non-governmental Palestinian Prisoner Club.

On August 19, Awawda’s detention was suspended but not entirely ended which prompted him to reject it and continue with his hunger strike, will remain in hospital to recover after suffering serious deterioration on his health.

40-year-old Palestinian prisoner Khalil Awawda, from the town of Idna in the city of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank.

He launched his hunger strike in March and went for 111 days before ending it on June 21 after the Israeli authorities promised to end his administrative detention. However, he resumed his fast on July 5 after Israel reneged on its promise and instead of releasing him at the end of his administrative detention in June, renewed it for four more months.

During his strike, he faced systematic abuse at several levels by the occupation forces. He was targeted physically and psychologically. Currently, he is facing a critical health situation in the Israeli Assaf Harofeh Hospital.

He was last arrested on December 27, 2021, on charges of incitement, and an administrative detention order was issued against him for a period of six months. Awawda has been arrested four times since 2002, and this is the fifth arrest.

Israel has accused him of being an activist of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) group.

Khalil is known to be an educated young man, a memorizer of the Noble Qur’an, and a social activist in his town. He conducted several campaigns with a group of volunteers to serve people.

He is a married man and father to four daughters: Tulane, Lauren, Maria and Maryam, the oldest of whom is 9 years old.

It is noteworthy that administrative detention is a decision to imprison by an Israeli military order, alleging the existence of a “secret file” for the detainee, without filing an indictment, and extends for 6 months, which can be extended several times.

Out of the approximately 4,550 Palestinian prisoners currently held by Israel, about 730 are currently being held in administrative detention, a number that has increased since March as Israel stepped up its raids in the occupied West Bank.

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Sakina Fatima

Sakina Fatima, a digital journalist with, has a master's degree in business administration and is a graduate in mass communication and journalism. Sakina covers topics from the Middle East, with a leaning towards human interest issues.
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