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PA researcher: 450 Arabs are under administrative detention

PA researcher: 85 percent of the prisoners held in Israel under administrative detention are terrorists who have been arrested in the past.

Riyad al-Ashqar, a researcher specializing in Palestinian Arab security prisoners, said on Thursday that nearly 85 percent of the prisoners held under administrative detention Israeli prisons are actually Palestinian Arabs who were previously detained, released and then arrested again.

Ashqar claimed that the purpose of the administrative detention was to allow the detention of hundreds of Palestinian Arab activists for lengthy periods of time in order to prevent them from enlisting the Palestinian Arab public for activity against Israel.

Since the beginning of the current year, he claimed, Israel has approved close to 800 administrative detention orders. He accused Israel of using the administrative detention orders as a "collective punishment" against the Palestinians.

More than 450 Palestinians are currently in administrative detention, including two minors, two women and three members of parliament, the data he published claimed.

Ashqar called on the Palestinian Authority to bring the issue of the administrative detainees before the International Criminal Court.

Administrative detention is intended to allow authorities to hold suspects without charge so information is not disclosed that could jeopardize security.

The United Nations has in the past called on Israel to end the practice of administrative detention.

Jailed terrorists have in the past used hunger strikes as a pressure tactic aimed at forcing Israel to release them out of fear for their lives. Israel has several times in the past caved to the pressure and released some hunger strikers.

Some 1,550 Palestinian Arabs imprisoned in Israel ended a hunger strike in May 2012, in exchange for a package of measures which would allow visits from relatives in Gaza and the transfer of detainees out of solitary confinement.

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