RAMALLAH, September 18 (JMCC) - Palestinian prisoner Samer al-Barq was moved to a hospital intensive care unit Monday as the hunger striker's health deteriorated, reports
Al-Barq, from Jayyous in the West Bank, is one of three prisoners on a hunger strike to protest their
treatment in Israeli prisons. His lawyer, Jawad Boulos, told Voice of
Palestine radio Tuesday that negotiations are underway to have al-Barq
released into Egyptian custody, after which he would be transferred to
Pakistan, where his wife lives.
Amani Sarahna said that Samer Al-Barq, one of three prisoners on hunger strike for weeks to demand their release from detention without trial, was placed in intensive care at Assaf Harofeh medical center, in central Israel, early on Monday evening.
"It looks as if he is refusing to take liquids or vitamins," she told AFP, citing doctors who she said called his lawyers.
Israel Prisons Service spokeswoman Sivan Weizman told AFP that Barq was moved from prison to the civilian hospital on Sunday but that she was not permitted to give details of a prisoner's medical condition.
The International Committee of the Red Cross warned on Friday that Barq and fellow hunger strikers Hassan Safadi and Ayman Sharawneh were close to death.
"These people are going to die unless the detaining authorities find a prompt solution," the head of the ICRC delegation in Israel and the occupied territories, Juan Pedro Schaerer, warned in a statement.
Amnesty International said last month that Safadi and Barq had refused food since May 22 and June 21 respectively to protest the policy Israel calls "administrative detentions," whereby prisoners are held without trial and which a military court can renew for periods of six months.
Al-Barq was repeatedly arrested over the last decade and passed between various security agencies, including those of the United States. In July 2010, Jordanian authorities transferred him to Israel, where he was issued an administrative detention order and held without charge ever since.
Al-Barq, Hassan Safadi and Ayman Sharawneh renewed their refusal to eat after Israeli prison authorities issued them with new administrative detention orders.
Thousands of Palestinian prisoners ended a hunger strike in May with the understanding that Israel would review its administrative detention policy, which has been criticized by Amnesty International and other international human rights groups.