Israel Sentences Hunger Striker to Ten Years in Gaza Strip

Striker Signs Deal With Israeli Officials in Hospital

A lawyer for Palestinian hunger striker Ayman Sharawneh, a detainee who has been hospitalized for a month in failing health, has announced a deal by which the Israeli government will sentence Sharawneh to 10 years in the Gaza Strip in lieu of additional time in an Israeli prison.

Sharawneh was originally sentenced to 38 years in prison by Israel, but was released in 2011 as part of a hostage exchange program. Shortly after his release Israel recaptured Sharawneh and put him back in prison.

Instead of remaining in the Israeli prison, Sharawneh will simply serve out the rest of his sentence in the Gaza Strip, with Israeli officials saying he would be allowed to leave the enclave if he isn’t a terrorist after 10 years.

It is interesting, in that Israel has often complained of international officials terming Gaza an “open-air prison” and is now overtly sentencing a detainee to serve out a 10 year term in the strip. The “allowed to leave in 10 years” aspect, if it turns out to be true, will also be noteworthy since the bulk of the population of the strip, despite not being accused of a crime in the first place, isn’t allowed to leave either.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.