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Prisoners to refuse food in solidarity with hunger strikers

Feb. 13, 2013 9:18 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 16, 2013 5:08 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Palestinians jailed in Israel will go on hunger strike on Tuesday in solidarity with detainees in Ramle prison clinic who have refused food for several months, Palestinian Authority media reported Wednesday.

All Palestinian prisoners will join the one-day strike, Wafa reported, quoting a statement from the Palestinian Prisoners Society.

Meanwhile, around 360 Palestinians jailed in Rimon prison, including Islamic Jihad leaders, will refuse food on Thursday in solidarity with long-term hunger strikers, the PPS said.

Samer Issawi has been on hunger strike for 196 days in Ramle prison. Tareq Qaadan and Jaafar Azzidineb have been on hunger strike for 78 days.

In a statement Tuesday, the executive director of the Palestine Center in Washington Yousef Munayyer criticized international silence on Issawi's protest.

"For months, Samer Issawi has refused food on a hunger strike and the world has ignored him. Despite his resilience, which is an inspiration to Palestinians everywhere, he is now reportedly close to death," Munayyer said.

"He is demanding freedom and dignity, and is willing to pay the ultimate price to achieve them. At this moment, international players and global civil society have an opportunity to either stand in support of Samer and other Palestinians engaging in nonviolent resistance to Israel’s brutal and illegal occupation regime, or remain muted.

"There can be no in between. Palestinians are watching with heavy hearts and history is recording."

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