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Activists block roads for 2nd day, calling for increased support of hunger strikers

May 15, 2017 10:42 A.M. (Updated: May 15, 2017 4:59 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- A group of Palestinian activists blocked off commuter roads leading to Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank for the second consecutive day on Monday morning, in an act of protest demanding more solidarity actions to support hunger-striking prisoners at both official and popular levels.

The mass hunger strike entered its 29th day on Monday, with participating prisoners facing a harsh crackdown from Israeli prison authorities as the medical conditions of the hunger strikers continued to decline.

While solidarity events have been held on a daily basis in the occupied Palestinian territory and abroad since the strike began on April 17, the activists told Ma'an on Sunday that they wanted to obstruct Palestinians from reaching Ramallah city "in an attempt to make them remember the suffering of Palestinian prisoners."

Locals in the village of Surda north of Ramallah told Ma'an that a group of young men returned Monday morning to close the main road that connects Ramallah to a number of villages, with burning tires and dumpsters.

Clashes broke out between the activists and Palestinian police who arrived to reopen the road, to allow hundreds of gridlocked commuters to continue.

A few kilometers away, a separate group of demonstrators near al-Jalazun refugee camp closed off the main highway between Ramallah and the northern West Bank, using burning tires and dumpsters.

Further south, the main road in the village of Kafr Aqab leading to the Qalandiya checkpoint was also blockaded by activists.

Northwest of Ramallah, a road blocked by Palestinian youth in the village of Abud also caused heavy traffic jams.
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