A day after reducing the sentence of Palestinian political prisoner Hana Shalabi from six months to four months, Israeli authorities denied a request by the Palestinian Prisoner support group Addameer demanding that the arresting officer and two others accused of torturing Shalabi be forced to testify.Sunday marks the 17th day of Shalabi’s open-ended hunger strike, which she vowed to continue despite the reduction in her sentence. On 23 February, Shalabi’s 65-year old mother and 67-year old father joined her hunger strike in solidarity.
She began her hunger strike soon after the 66-day hunger strike by prisoner Khader Adnan ended when he was promised an early release.
According to Addameer, Shalabi was arrested on 16 February, less than four months after being released from over two years in administrative detention on 18 October 2011 as part of the prisoner exchange deal concluded by the Israeli government and Hamas, whereby 1,027 Palestinian political prisoners were released in exchange for captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
Addameer’s lawyers reported that during her arrest, Hana and her family were beaten and harassed by Israeli Occupying Forces. After being taken to Salem Detention Center, Hana was subjected to additional beatings, humiliation, and other stark violations. She immediately began an open hunger strike and was subsequently placed in solitary confinement as punishment.
In the latest legal briefing filed by Addameer, the group demanded that three Israeli officers who allegedly beat, brutalized and interrogated Shalabi during the course of her abduction be forced to testify in court.
Israeli authorities have accused Shalabi of being active in the Islamic Jihad resistance movement, a charge which she denies.