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Journalists, prisoners stand in solidarity with hunger-striking al-Qiq

Feb. 18, 2016 3:22 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 18, 2016 3:25 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma’an) -- Palestinian prisoners and journalists held separate rallies on Thursday in solidarity with hunger-striking Palestinian journalist Muhammad al-Qiq, sources said.

In Israel's Eshel prison, Palestinian prisoners reportedly held in Section 10 of the jail in a "day of disobedience," banging on jail doors and screaming in solidarity with al-Qiq, who has been on an open-ended hunger strike for 86 days.

Israeli forces in response put prisoners in Section 10 on lockdown.

Prisoners of the section have reportedly said they would retaliate with an escalation in disobedience if al-Qiq dies before being released.

The Palestine Prisoners' Center for Studies meanwhile warned that the Israeli authorities would be held completely responsible if al-Qiq's strike lead to his death.

In the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron, dozens of journalists took the streets also marking their solidarity with al-Qiq.

Journalists, members of the Palestinian Prisoners' Society, the PA Committee for Prisoners' Affairs, Palestinian teachers and a number of political factions were in attendance.

Al-Qiq is in critical condition after having been on hunger strike for 86 days against his administrative detention. Unlike other well-known hunger strikers, al-Qiq has refused to take salt or minerals, and is only drinking water.

The Israeli Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a petition by al-Qiq to be moved to a Palestinian hospital. Al-Qiq told his lawyer he would not end his strike until he was both released and brought to a West Bank hospital.

Amnesty International slammed the court decision shortly after, demanding al-Qiq's release.

Al-Qiq is one of at least 650 Palestinians being held by Israel under administrative detention, a practice that the UN and Amnesty International have repeatedly argued Israel uses as excessively and in contravention to international law.


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