The headline of an article in Al-Esteqlal, the organ of the PIJ, following the renewed administrative detention of Muhammad Allan: “The prisoner Allan … will ignite the region” (Al-Esteqlal, September 17, 2015)
1. PIJ operative Muhammad Allan was rearrested by the Israeli Police on September 16, 2015, under an administrative detention order. This was after his discharge from Barzilai Medical Center (in the Israeli city of Ashkelon), where he was hospitalized after a decline in his condition due to his hunger strike, which lasted 65 days. Following the decline in his condition, and concern that continuing the hunger strike could cause irreversible brain damage, the Israeli Supreme Court temporarily suspended his administrative detention. After ending his hunger strike, Muhammad Allan apparently recovered.
2. Immediately after being detained, Muhammad Allan resumed his hunger strike. However, two days later, Allan announced his decision to end his hunger strike and start eating again. His reason for terminating the hunger strike after two days is still unclear to us.
Administrative detainee Muhammad Allan during his hospitalization at Ashkelon’s Barzilai Medical Center (Ma’an News Agency, September 17, 2015)
3. Muhammad Allan was previously imprisoned in 2006-2009 for recruiting suicide bombers and aiding wanted men. In November 2014, he was placed in administrative detention, after the Israeli security authorities received information that he was in contact with other PIJ terrorist operatives in order to promote terrorist attacks. “Security sources” told a reporter for the Israeli daily Ha’aretz that the information received in the case of Muhammad Allan was considerable and serious (Ha’aretz, September 17, 2015).
4. Following are initial reactions to the renewed administrative detention of Muhammad Allan:
A. The newspaper Al-Esteqlal, the official organ of the PIJ, published an article about the administrative detention of Muhammad Allan immediately upon his discharge from the hospital in Ashkelon. The menacing title of the article was: “The detainee Allan […] will ignite the region” (Al-Esteqlal, September 17, 2015).
B. Ahmad al-Mudallal, a senior PIJ operative in the Gaza Strip, claimed that Israel, as usual, was in violation of the treaties and agreements. He called on international human rights organizations to intervene. Al-Mudallal also stated that the PIJ would continue to support its prisoners and would not abandon them (Al-Quds Battalions website, September 17, 2015). Note: Other senior PIJ operatives have refrained from commenting on the renewed detention of Muhammad Allan, and their remarks have focused on incitement to violence and terrorism following the events in Jerusalem and the Temple Mount (including Khaled al-Batash’s call for the resumption of suicide bombings).
C. Muhammad Allan’s father, Nasr al-Din Allan, condemned the renewed detention of his son, calling it “abduction”. According to him, Israel’s action cancels the agreement reached by the parties, which resulted in the end of the hunger strike (Al-Quds Battalions website, September 17, 2015).
D. Qadura Fares, chairman of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, said that the renewed detention of administrative detainee Muhammad Allan is a “show,” carried out by the Israeli Military Advocate General, together with the Israeli Supreme Court (PalToday, September 16, 2015).
5. The (temporary) cessation of the administrative detention of Muhammad Allan was perceived by the PIJ as a victory over Israel because, from its perspective, it forced Israel to comply with Muhammad Allan’s demands through a combination of public opinion pressure and threats to violate the lull. Muhammad Allan’s renewed administrative detention and resumed hunger strike may be perceived by the PIJ as a prestige-related blow that erodes, or possibly even eliminates, the image of victory over Israel that Allan managed to achieve.
“The Irish method”
6. On September 20, 2015, following the termination of Muhammad Allan’s hunger strike, Nasser al-Laham, Editor-in-Chief of the Ma’an News Agency, published an article praising the hunger strikes by administrative detainees. The article states that the strikes reflect what he calls the “Irish method,” which is hunger strikes undertaken by individuals. In his opinion, this method may be more effective than the so-called Palestinian method of collective hunger strikes. Nasser al-Laham believes that the “Irish method” is a necessity, despite the difficulty and danger to life inherent in this method.
7. Below is an appendix presenting a brief summary of the hunger strikes by Irish Republican Army (IRA) operatives referred to by Nasser al-Laham in his article. However, this should not be perceived as an attempt to draw an analogy between the hunger strikes by IRA operatives and the hunger strikes by PIJ operatives, since the hunger strikes in question were carried out in different countries, under different circumstances, at different points in time and under different administrations.
 Further to the ITIC’s Information Bulletin from September 3, 2015: “Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) twice managed to secure the release of its administrative detainees, accomplished through long hunger strikes accompanied by threats of undermining the lull in the Gaza Strip. They employed a policy of brinkmanship that has potential for future deterioration.”