As Palestinian prisoners' hunger strike enters its second week, international solidarity is needed now, more than ever. Prisoners are being sent to isolation in increasing numbers, family visits are being denied, families threatened and identity cards conficated, lawyer visits denied, and belongings and clothing confiscated.
International solidarity to support Palestinian hunger strikers is also growing:
éirígí, an Irish republican socialist political party, has called for a vigil at the Israeli embassy in Dublin on October 5 to support hunger strikers; the Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa'adat encourages all to attend!
The International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network has issued a strong call for solidarity with the Palestinian hunger strikers, and the striking prisoners in California, including a highlight of the case of Ahmad Sa'adat. We encourage all to sign on.
A number of international organizations, including the Platform in Solidarity with Palestine, the Irish Republican Socialist Committees, and others, have issued statements and calls in solidarity with the prisoners.
The website mobilizing solidarity with the California prison hunger strike - where prisoners have also been denied legal visits, lawyers threatened, and retaliation used against prisoners - has also provided information in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners. We urge people to follow the California strike and provide support and solidarity!
In Canada, Voice of Palestine Radio will feature an interview with a prisoner support activist live from Ramallah. The show will air at 8-9 PM Pacific Standard Time and can be heard on Vancouver Cooperative Radio (CFRO) 102.7 FM live at that time for people in Vancouver, Canada. People outside of Vancouver can listen to the show live on the Internet http://www.coopradio.org/content/listen.
Palestinian prisoners in several prisons, including Nafha prison, have reported in the past few days that they were threatened that family visits would be denied in retaliation for their participation in the hunger strike. Israeli prison officials told the prisoners that for each day they spent on hunger strike, they would be banned from family visitation for 1 month.
In addition, women prisoners participating in the hunger strike, Sumoud Kharajeh, Linan Abu Ghoulmeh, Duaa Jayyousi and Wuroud Kassem, were moved into isolation and solitary confinement, Linan Abu Ghoulmeh while under arbitrary administrative detention.
The Israeli occupation prison service also transfered prisoners from Departments 13 and 14 in the Nafha prison to other prisons; their location remains unknown. Two prisoners in Nafha, members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine who were abducted from Jericho prison with Ahmad Sa'adat have also been placed in isolation, Hamdi Qur'an and Basil al-Asmar.
During a family visit, Israeli occupation prison authorities confiscated the identity cards of the families of Palestinian prisoners Mahmoud Abu Wahdan and Raed Sayel. The families were told that because their imprisoned relatives refused to break their hunger strike, they were not allowed to visit them.
In the Ofer prison, Israeli authorities placed 9 detainees - members of the PFLP - in solitary confinement and confiscated all their personal effects, clothing and other belongings.
In Asqelan Prison, the Israeli prison administration prevented lawyers from visiting detainees. A lawyer who came to Asqelan to visit prisoners Ahed Abu Ghoulmeh, Allam Al-Kaabi, and Shadi Sharafa was banned from visiting the prisoners and informed that these three and all prisoners from the PFLP who are on hunger strike are prohibited from receiving lawyer visits.
The hunger strike has been growing as well. Earlier in the day 20 prisoners from the Fateh party joined the open hunger strike, including the oldest Palestinian prisoner, Fakhri Barghouti, who entered his 34th year in Israeli prisons, and Akram Mansour, who has been imprisoned for 33 years and is quite ill with cancer. Additional prisoners also plan to announce their joining the hunger strike in the next few days. In the Negev prison, Anas Al-Shanti was placed in solitary confinement. In Ramon prison, prisoner Basem Al-Khandaqjy, a member of Central Committee of the People's Party, joined the hunger strike.
TAKE ACTION TO SUPPORT AHMAD SA'ADAT AND ALL PALESTINIAN PRISONERS!
1. Picket, protest or call the Israeli embassy or consulate in your location and demand the immediate freedom of Ahmad Sa'adat and all Palestinian political prisoners. Make it clear that you support the demands of Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike! Send us reports of your protests at Israeli embassies and consulates.
2. Distribute the free downloadable Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa'adat flyer in your community at local events.
3. Write to the International Committee of the Red Cross and other human rights organizations to exercise their responsibilities and act swiftly to demand that the Israelis ensure that Ahmad Sa'adat and all Palestinian prisoners are freed from punitive isolation. Email the ICRC, whose humanitarian mission includes monitoring the conditions of prisoners, at firstname.lastname@example.org, and inform them about the urgent situation of Ahmad Sa'adat.
4. Email the Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa'adat at email@example.com with announcements, reports and information about your local events, activities and flyer distributions.
The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa'adat