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The Journal Gazette

  • A masked Palestinian throws back a gas canister previously shoot by Israeli forces, not pictured, during a protest to support Palestinian prisoners, outside Ofer, an Israeli military prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013. Palestinian protesters clashed with Israeli soldiers at a rally Tuesday in support of four imprisoned Palestinians on hunger strike, as hundreds of inmates said they were refusing food for the day in solidarity with the fasting inmates. One of the four hunger-striking Palestinians is 35-year-old Samer Issawi whose health has severely deteriorated after he has refused food, on-and-off, for more than 200 days. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 7:58 am

Lawyer: Israel won't free Palestinian on strike

Associated Press

A lawyer for a Palestinian prisoner on hunger strike says Israel's supreme court has rejected a petition to release his client.

Attorney Nery Ramati says he was told Wednesday to exhaust the appeals process with a military committee first, before petitioning the top court.

Ramati's client, Ayman Sharawneh, was originally sentenced for 38 years for militant activity but was released in 2011 exchange for a captive soldier.

But the military committee later ordered Sharawneh re-arrested, citing secret evidence allegedly showing he violated his release terms.

Sharawneh has refused food for over 70 days in an off-again, on-again hunger strike to protest his continued detention.

The military committee will meet Feb. 28 to decide on Sharawneh's fate. It has the power to decide whether he will serve his full term.