Administrative detention has been a systematic policy of the Israeli occupation for decades, including former prisoners, which prompted the captive movement to go on hunger strikes and boycott the courts in condemnation of this policy.
In this report, we learn more about the development of this Israeli policy, and how the Palestinians, administrative detainees in prisons, faced it.
Human rights organizations concerned with prisoners’ affairs define administrative detention, which Israel uses against Palestinian prisoners, as detaining a person on the orders of military commanders and on the recommendation of intelligence after collecting materials classified as “secret.”
Human rights organizations say that the Israeli occupation resorts through administrative detention to detain Palestinian civilians without a specific charge and without trial, which deprives the prisoner and his lawyer of knowing the reasons for the arrest, and often leads to the renewal of the administrative detention order against him successive times.
The Israeli occupation has been practicing the policy of administrative detention – which it copied from the British Mandate – since the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, and thus Israel is the only one that still operates in administrative detention.
According to the Palestinian Prisoners Club, the occupation authorities have increasingly used this policy since the early years of their occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in 1967.
Up to 2014, more than 50,000 cases of administrative detention were recorded, out of more than 805 cases of detention, according to data from the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs.
During the years of the first intifada, between 1987 and 1994, about 19,000 arrest warrants were issued, and the number was almost similar during the years of the second intifada, from 2000 to 2007, when it approached about 18,000 cases.
The year 2022 witnessed many shifts in terms of the reality of detention operations. The occupation issued 2,409 administrative detention orders, and about 850 of them remained under administrative detention. It is the highest in more than 10 years.
Of these, 19 children were subjected to administrative detention, and 7 children remained under administrative detention, and two female families remained.
The occupation pursues a policy of administrative detention for former prisoners. Last year, 43 Jerusalemites were transferred to administrative detention, noting that the occupation renewed administrative detention for some prisoners more than once.
As the occupation forces continued to administratively detain more Palestinians, the prisoners were forced to take several struggle steps, including boycotting the Israeli military courts and going on hunger strike.
In 2022, 75 prisoners fought several empty stomach battles to protest several arbitrary measures, most of which were strikes against administrative detention.
One of the longest strikes was the prisoner Khalil Awawda’s strike, which lasted for 172 days, and the occupation deliberately directed a new charge against him to continue his detention and repudiate the agreement.