Clashes erupted between Palestinians and Israeli occupation forces, with at least one Palestinian being detained, across the occupied West Bank on Friday, as Palestinians from several districts staged solidarity protests with hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners, who entered the fifth day of the mass “Freedom and Dignity” strike on Friday.
Initially called for by Fatah-affiliated prisoners, Palestinian prisoners from across the political spectrum have since pledged their commitment to undertake the strike, with the media committee of the “Freedom and Dignity” strike estimating on Tuesday that some 1,500 prisoners were forgoing food.
The hunger strikers have denounced the torture, ill treatment, and medical neglect of Palestinian prisoners at the hands of Israeli authorities, as well as Israel’s widespread use of administrative detention — internment without trial or charges — which is only permitted under international law in extremely limited circumstances.
Northern West Bank
One Palestinian teenager was detained from the Nablus district as Israeli occupation forces attempted to prevent worshipers from performing Friday prayers at the Beita crossroads south of Nablus city. Locals identified the teen as 16-year-old Muhammad Qassem Abu Mazen.
Dozens of Palestinian worshipers from the villages of Beita, Osarin, Udala, and Aqraba had gathered at the crossroads to perform Friday prayers as a form of demonstration in solidarity with hunger-striking prisoners.
An Israeli army spokesperson said they were unaware of the detention, and would look into reports of the incident.
Central West Bank
Clashes erupted near Ofer prison west of Ramallah after dozens of Palestinians performed Friday prayers on lands of the Rafat village, which Ofer is built on, in solidarity with prisoners.
Following the prayers, tens of Palestinians took part in a solidarity march headed towards Ofer, which was the site of a barbecue on Thursday, put on by right-wing Zionist settlers who wanted to “celebrate the hunger strike,” to break the will of the Palestinian hunger strikers by cooking barbecue so that the smells would enter the prison cells.
Israeli occupation forces fired tear-gas bombs, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel bullets to suppress the march on Friday, injuring some.
An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that “earlier today a violent riot broke out involving tens of Palestinians who hurled rocks near the Beituniya crossing west of Ramallah. In order to prevent an escalation of violence Israeli forces used riot dispersal means”
Source: Ma'an News Agency