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UN SG urges Israel to try or release Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] on Wednesday urged [UN News Centre report] the Israeli government to try or release more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners without delay to avoid any further risk on their health condition. The prisoners, who have been in Israeli custody, began their open-ended hunger strike two weeks ago to protest against unjust arrest procedures, arbitrary detention and bad prison conditions. Filippo Grandi, the Commissioner-General of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) [official website], also expressed his concern [UN News Centre report] for the Palestinian prisoners especially two of the administrative detainees who are in serious conditions and in imminent danger of death.

On Monday the Israeli Supreme Court ruled against [JURIST report] two hunger striking Palestinian prisoners who sought release from their administrative detention. Earlier in May, Richard Falk, the UN Special Rapporteur of the occupied Palestinian territory [official website] called on Israel to comply with international standards [JURIST report] on how to treat prisoners on hunger strike because Israeli prison authorities have taken punitive measures against those detainees who have on hunger strike since April.

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