PA: Ignoring hunger strike a humanitarian disaster (JERUSALEM POST) By KHALED ABU TOAMEH, YAAKOV LAPPIN 04/30/12)
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Next week will see an explosion in Israeli prisons, where hundreds of
Palestinian inmates have been on a hunger strike, Palestinian
Authority Prisoners Affairs Minister Issa Qaraqi said on Sunday.
Qaraqi urged the UN General Assembly to hold an emergency meeting to
discuss the case of the striking prisoners.
“The situation inside the Israeli prisons is very difficult,” he told
a press conference in Ramallah. “This requires real and serious
political and legal action.”
Qaraqi warned that if any of the prisoners are harmed as a result of
the hunger strike, this would be a “curse in the face of
The PA minister accused the government of seeking to inflict
a “humanitarian disaster” on the prisoners by continuing to ignore
Next week, thousands of prisoners will join the hunger strike, and
they will not stop until all their demands are met, he said.
The prisoners are demanding, among other things, an end to solitary
confinement, administrative detentions and a series of punitive
measures that were imposed by the government in response to the
abduction of IDF tank gunner Gilad Schalit to the Gaza Strip.
In a letter smuggled out of one of the prisons, leaders of the
striking inmates called for a one-day general strike in the
Palestinian territories in solidarity with the prisoners.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Saadat, the leader of the Popular Front for the
Liberation of Palestine, was transferred to a hospital over the
weekend after a serious deterioration in his health, his family and
lawyer said on Sunday.
Saadat was moved to Ramle Prison hospital by the Prisons Service
after joining the hunger strike that began on April 17, following two
highprofile hunger strikes launched by Palestinian security prisoners
that made international headlines.
Saadat is serving a 30-year sentence for his role in the
assassination of tourism minister Rehavam Ze’evi in 2001.
Some 50 security prisoners in recent days joined the 1,200 inmates
who are on a hunger strike, according to the Prisons Service.
The inmates, convicted for a range of terrorist offensives, have been
separated from the general population, though not from one another, a
source from the Prisons Service confirmed last week. (© 1995-2011,
The Jerusalem Post 04/30/12)
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