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'Marwan' film exploring imprisoned Palestinian leader's life to be screened in Italy

May 13, 2017 5:49 P.M. (Updated: May 13, 2017 5:49 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The film “Marwan” produced by Ma’an Media Network is set to be shown at the Palestinian embassy's headquarters in Rome, Italy on Saturday. 

The film, released earlier this year, explores the life of the imprisoned Fatah leader Marwan Barghouthi, who is currently leading a mass hunger strike among Palestinians held in Israeli prisons. He has spent more than three weeks in solitary confinement since the start of the strike on April 17. 

The film will be shown at 9 p.m. in cooperation with the General Union of Palestinian communities in Europe and the Palestinian embassy in Italy. 

A solidarity march with Palestinian prisoners is also expected to take place before the film’s showing. 

After being detained in 2002, Barghouthi was handed five consecutive life sentences after Israeli authorities charged him with the founding of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade, a group Israel designates as a “terrorist” organization, and being involved in several murders during the Second Intifada -- charges he has consistently denied.

He has remained politically active from behind bars, including assisting in the drafting of the Mecca agreement in 2007, which paved the way for a unity government aimed at ending internal political conflict in the besieged Gaza Strip. He has also emerged as a prominent leader in the Palestinian prisoners’ rights movement. 

Barghouthi remains one of the most popular politicians in Palestine, receiving a wide range of support among various political factions. Many see him as an indispensable component of hope for obtaining a viable peace process and a renewed unification of the Palestinian political landscape.

As a result of the widespread respect held for Barghouthi, the politician was named a strong contender to replace Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, as a 2016 poll revealed Barghouthi having more popular support than any other politician as a potential presidential replacement, and the only Fatah member to receive more support than Hamas’ Ismail Haniyeh.

He was also nominated by several individuals, including leaders of Belgium’s parliament, for the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize. 
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