JERUSALEM (JTA) — Khader Adnan, a Palestinian who went on a 66-day hunger strike to protest his administrative detention, was released from an Israeli jail to his home in the West Bank.
Hundreds of Palestinian supporters came out late Tuesday night to greet Adnan, who first stopped to meet with the families of other Palestinian prisoners currently on hunger strikes, the Palestinian Ma’an news agency reported.
“The happiness I saw on my people’s faces made me forget all the suffering I experienced when I was on hunger strike,” Adnan told Ma’an.
Adnan, a member of Islamic Jihad, agreed in February to end his hunger strike in return for an Israeli agreement not to extend his administrative detention. A prisoner can be held in administrative detention, without charges being brought, for up to four months.
He was arrested on Dec. 17 on the basis of “secret evidence” that he is a threat to regional security.
His hunger strike reportedly was the longest ever undertaken by a Palestinian prisoner in Israel. It sparked several other hunger strikes, including that of Hana Shalabi, a member of Islamic Jihad, who agreed on March 29 to end her 43-day hunger strike and be freed in exchange for spending the next three years in Gaza.