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Israel to Release Palestinian Detainee Waging Hunger Strike

Feb. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Israel agreed in principle to release a Palestinian detainee who has been on a hunger strike for more than two months.

Israel prosecutors reached the agreement to free Khader Adnan in April during negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, the Justice Ministry said in an e-mailed statement today. In turn, Adnan decided to end his hunger strike, Palestinian Prisoner Affairs Minister Issa Qaraqe said at a news conference in Ramallah.

Adnan, a leader of the militant Islamic Jihad organization, was arrested Dec. 17 at his home in the northern West Bank city of Jenin and ordered to be held for four months under rules of “administrative detention” that don’t require formal charges to be filed. Israel transferred him to a hospital after his physical condition declined.

Israel will release Adnan April 17 unless investigators find evidence to charge him with a crime, the Justice Ministry said. Islamic Jihad is considered a terrorist group by Israel and the U.S.

To contact the reporters on this story: Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv at jferziger@bloomberg.net; Fadwa Hodali in Ramallah at fhodali@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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