ISRAEL: Palestinian Prisoners on Hunger Strike Find New Support

By Jillian Kestler-D’Amours, Inter Press Service

HAIFA, Northern Israel, Oct 10, 2011 (IPS) – Sitting in the shade of a small lemon tree in the German Colony area of Haifa, eight Palestinian activists are on hunger strike since Saturday in solidarity with Palestinian political prisoners who have been striking for nearly two weeks in protest against poor prison conditions and a lack of basic rights.

“I decided to participate in the hunger strike in order to support the political prisoners, the freedom fighters, imprisoned in the Israeli dungeons. As a Palestinian, I know for sure that those fighters, those men and women, have fought in order to defend my rights,” Muhannad Abu Ghosh, a Haifa resident and one of the hunger strikers, told IPS.

“This hunger strike declared in Haifa is breaking through the borders which were put by the Israeli occupation throughout the years,” Abu Ghosh added.

More than 100 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails began an open-ended hunger strike on Sep. 27. Their demands include stopping Israel’s use of solitary confinement, including that of Ahmad Sa’adat, general secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), rectifying the arbitrary nature of denying family visits, and ending the routine humiliation of detainees during prison transfer.

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