Palestinian terror suspect Mohammad Allaan said in a video released Friday that his 65-day hunger strike to protest his administrative detention by Israel had been successful, and thanked his Israeli Arab “brothers” for their support.
“I thank everyone one by one, all those who stood by our side and by the side of the family, in front of the hospital and everywhere, to the brothers inside (Israel) … I kiss them on the forehead and on the hands for this stance,” Haaretz quoted Allaan as saying, in a message in Arabic to Israel’s Arab population.
“This proves that we are one nation, and no distance or border will divide us. I hope we will not have to deal with further conflicts and crises. I thank everyone again and God, who helped me emerge from this crisis,” he said from his bed in an Ashkelon hospital.
The High Court on Wednesday suspended Allaan’s administrative detention — a special anti-terror measure that allows imprisonment without trial on terrorism charges — after tests showed that he had sustained brain damage as a result of his two-month fast. There were conflicting reports as to whether the damage was reversible.
Allaan, 31, was protesting his administrative detention for alleged affiliation with the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization.
A Barzilai spokesperson said Friday that Allaan was now in stable condition. “He is being fed intravenously in limited amounts, and soon liquids will be introduced orally,” the spokesperson said.
Also Friday, thousands of Israeli Arabs attended an Islamic Movement rally in support of Allaan at the stadium in the Arab town of Taybeh. The event, held under the banner, “Strengthening the stability and continuity in the Holy Land,” was attended by a number of Arab MKs from the Joint (Arab) List.
The temporary suspension of his status as prisoner was enough to allow Allaan to end his hunger strike, family members said. His health had deteriorated Wednesday night, and he was placed in a medically induced coma as doctors began the long work of rehabilitating his body.
Right-wing lawmakers and ministers reacted furiously to the High Court decision, with some accusing the court of setting a dangerous precedent that would lead to the release of other security prisoners being held in Israel.
Israel passed a controversial law last month allowing authorities to force-feed hunger-striking prisoners, but doctors at Barzilai and elsewhere have said they will refuse to comply with the directive.
Several Palestinians have gone on hunger strike in recent years to protest administrative detention, with a number managing to wrest their freedom or better conditions from Israeli authorities.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report