Monday, February 20, 2012

Truth Behind Hunger Strike of Khader Adnan: Terrorist Leader Turned "Baker"

  • In statements on the hunger strike of senior member of Islamic Jihad, Khader Adnan, currently held in administrative detention by Israel, numerous NGOs and media accounts have omitted critical information in order to create a false "good vs. evil" narrative.
  • This is not Adnan's first hunger strike. In October 2010, Adnan initiated a hunger strike following his arrest by the Palestinian National Authority security services. At the time, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) (funded by the European UnionIreland;DenmarkNorwayChristian Aid (UK); Grassroots International (US); and Switzerland, Sweden, Netherlands, Denmark via the NGO Development Center) issued a statement, referring to Adnan as an "Islamic Jihad leader" and condemning his detention. However, PCHR's February 19 statement regarding his latest hunger strike in Israel omits information about his membership in Islamic Jihad.
  • Reflecting bias and double standards, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, which are campaigning against the current detention, did not release statements regarding Adnan's 2010 arrest by the PNA and his subsequent hunger strike.
  • Most NGO statements omit the fact that administrative detention is a common procedure used by democratic and rights- respecting states around the world in security-related cases, including the US and the UK. Israel's detention law meets and often exceeds the due process standards required by criminal procedure and human rights law.
  • Contrary to the claims of NGOs, it is not true that Adnan's detention is "without charge." The administrative detention laws require that the detainee be brought before a judge within a short period of time and any detention must be based upon credible evidence. All detainees have the right to challenge their detention to the Israeli Supreme Court sitting as the High Court of Justice.
  • Islamic Jihad is recognized as a terrorist organization by the EU, US, UK, Israel, Australia, Canada, and Japan. The "right of association" does not grant immunity from punishment for activities in terrorist organizations.
  • Amnesty International has an ongoing campaign relating to Adnan. While some statements identify his involvement in Islamic Jihad, others ignore or minimize this key aspect of the story. Instead, he is referred to as a "baker" and "political activist." This creates the distorted impression that Adnan is being persecuted for his political beliefs.
  • In multiple statements, the Palestinian NGO Addameer (funded by Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands via NDC; indirectly by the Netherlands via ICCOfails to notehis membership in Islamic Jihad.
  • Al Haq's (funded by Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands via NDCNorway;Ireland; and Spain) statement also fails to note his membership in Islamic Jihad.
  • In a June 8, 2005 Boston Globe article, Adnan admonished the Palestinian Authority for cooperating with Israeli officials to apprehend suspects in the wake of a Tel Aviv suicide bombing: "'We have strong suspicions that the security coordination' between Israeli and Palestinian authorities that has resumed in recent weeks 'is responsible for this,' Adnan said. He said there had been no response to Islamic Jihad demands that the PA say publicly that it was not involved in helping Israel identify jihadis who were planning fresh attacks."
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