The Palestinian prisoner Mohammed Allan, who has been on a hunger strike for 59 days in Israeli prison, has fallen into a coma according to PressTV news website.
Allan, 31, began the strike after being detained by Israeli forces in November without a trial. Allan in his ninth week of his hunger strike fell unconscious at an Israeli hospital on Friday in a case that could test Israel's new force-feeding law.
He was moved to Barzilai hospital in Ashkelon where he was put on a respirator and a saline drip and his condition was stable, according to the hospital officials.
On Aug. 9, Palestinians and Israeli-Arabs held posters during a rally calling for Allan’s release in the city of Beersheva, according to the Agence France Press. The placards held by protesters reads in Arabic "Freedom for the prisoner Mohammed Nasr Aldeen Allan" and "No to force feeding".
The ability to force-feed Palestinian prisoners on a hunger strike was legislated through a law passed on 30 June by the Knesset (Israeli parliament) with a majority of 46 to 40.
Hunger strikes by Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli jails have long concerned Israel, since the strikes could end in death and certainly cause protests in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
But the Israeli Medical Association urged Israeli doctors not to abide to the law since they see force-feeding as a type of torture in addition to being medically risky, but the law was welcomed by some Israeli officials such as Yoel Hadar, legal advisor for the Public Security Ministry.
NGOs believe that force-feeding violates autonomy and human dignity and serves political purposes only, while politicians say new force-feeding law protects the sanctity of life.
“As regards Mr. Allan’s hunger strike, any solution must take into account the need to protect his moral and physical integrity. The detainee’s choice must be respected and his dignity preserved,” said Jacques de Maio, the head of the ICRC’s delegation in Israel.
About 5,516 Palestinian security detainees and prisoners were held in the Israeli prisons till the end of May 2015 according to B’tselem, The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories. There are 351 detainees from the Gaza Strip, additionally dozens are held in the Israeli Defence Forces’ (IDF) facilities for a short period of time.
An additional 1,022 Palestinians were held in Israeli Prison Service facilities for being in Israel illegally according to B'tselem.