News ID: 191844
Published: 0747 GMT April 30, 2017

Palestinian prisoners’ mass hunger strike enters third week

Palestinian prisoners’ mass hunger strike enters third week

An open-ended mass hunger strike by Palestinians to draw the world's attention to harsh conditions at Israeli prisons entered its third week, with some of those refusing food experiencing health decline.

The media committee of the hunger strike, dubbed the Freedom and Dignity Strike, said that several of the hunger-striking inmates had lost 10 kilograms of their weight, Press TV quoted the Palestinian Ma'an news agency as saying on Sunday.

A number of the hunger strikers held in the Israeli Ofer prison are suffering from low blood pressure, severe headaches as well as stomach and joint problems, the report added.

It further noted that the Israeli authorities do not allow the Palestinian prisoners to drink cool water and instead force them to drink warm water.

The long-planned mass strike, which is led by a jailed leader of the Fatah Movement, Marwan Barghouti, began on April 17.

The strike initially began with 1,500 prisoners, but now some 2,000 people are believed to be refusing food to denounce the inhumane treatment of the Palestinians held in Israeli jails.

 

More joining

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Some 100 more Palestinian prisoners being held in Israel’s Megiddo prison have joined the hunger strike, Press TV reported.

Palestinians on Saturday took part in sit-in protests in the occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem in a show of solidarity with the prisoners on the open-ended hunger strike.

Tents were also erected throughout the occupied Palestinian territories for people to show their support for hunger striking prisoners.

 

Hunger strike in UK

 

Also a group of students in the UK is on a hunger strike in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners.

Activists at the University of Manchester said the strike, which began on Thursday, would last for at least one week.

The students said they “have a responsibility to support the Palestinian cause,” Middle East Monitor reported.

Also student Huda Ammori said strikers want to put pressure on the university to stop supporting companies which enable the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

Students say that the university invests in companies such as Caterpillar, which has in the past been criticized by rights groups for selling vehicles to Israel.

The protesters argue that such deals violate the university's own socially responsible investment policy.

According to figures provided by the Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer in January, 6,500 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli jails, 536 of them arbitrarily.

Palestinian prisoners have continuously resorted to open-ended hunger strikes in an attempt to voice their outrage at the so-called administrative detention, which 

   
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