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Prisoners of Israel hunger strike over solitary

Jan. 21, 2011 4:03 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 21, 2011 9:40 P.M.)
NABLUS (Ma'an) -- The National Prisoners' Committee announced on Friday, the start of a two-day hunger strike in Israel's Nafha prison in the Negev desert.

The committee said it called the strike to protest the solitary confinement of Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine secretary-general Ahmad Sa'adat and Hamas lawmaker Jamal Abu Al-Haya.

Supporters say the men have been frequently placed in solitary confinement for long durations throughout their terms in prison.

The political leaders suffered deteriorating health and Israel's prison authorities refused them treatment, the committee said.

Further, the strike was called to protest regular night raids on cells and confiscation of detainees' property. Prison guards also frequently seized family members' visiting permits on their arrival to the prison, the committee added.

Israeli authorities also prevented prisoners from enrolling at universities, and canceled the enrollment of those already studying.

In addition, the committee said prisoners were denied hot water or mattresses in order to force detainees to pay for them at their own expense.

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