Adalah demands that Barzilai Hospital refrain from force-feeding Palestinian detainee Mohammed Allan

On 11 August 2015, Adalah sent an urgent letter to Dr. Hazi Levi, the director of Barzilai Hospital located in Ashkelon, and the Attorney General demanding that the hospital refrain from force-feeding the lawyer Mohammed Allan, a Palestinian prisoner on hunger strike for 56 days in protest against his administrative detention since November 2014. The Israel Prison Service (IPS) transferred Allan to Barzilai, after the medical staff at Soroka Hospital in Beer el-Sabe, where Allan was previously hospitalized, refused to force-feed him.


The letter, sent by Adalah Attorneys Nadeem Shehadeh and Sawsan Zaher, informs that hospital that Allan insists on continuing his hunger strike, absolutely rejects any attempt to feed him, and refuses to receive any kind of treatment. Force-feeding, according to Adalah, constitutes, "a serious violation of the prisoner’s right of dignity, bodily integrity, autonomy, privacy, the right to refuse medical treatment and the right to political expression."


Adalah also contended that, "The force-feeding of people deprived of their liberty under the absolute control by the state constitutes torture, and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment, which is contrary to the UN Convention on Torture (CAT), an international human rights treaty ratified by Israel."


As for the medical staff, Adalah stressed that, "Force-feeding constitutes a flagrant violation of the rules of medical ethics set by the World Medical Association (WMA) since 1975. In 1991, the WMA issued the Declaration of Malta on Hunger Strikers, which absolutely prohibits the participation of doctors in force-feeding. The Israeli Medical Association (IMA) waged a public struggle against the forced-feeding legislation, recently adopted by the Knesset in July 2015, stating clearly that: "Force-feeding is considered to be torture, and doctors are prohibited from participating in torture."


Update: Allan lost consciousness on 14 August 2015.


See also:


The Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council, the Arab Association for Human Rights, Adalah and Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, Call for Urgent Action: Palestinian Administrative Detainee on Hunger Strike in Critical Condition, 13 August 2015


Joint Press Release Adalah and Al Mezan, “Israel enacted "Force-Feeding Law" to break the will of Palestinian detainees on hunger strike against inhumane conditions,” 31 July 2015