[Ppnews] Alive and victorious: Palestinian footballer Mahmoud Sarsak home after epic 3 month hunger strike

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Jul 10 10:30:01 EDT 2012

Alive and victorious: Palestinian footballer 
Mahmoud Sarsak home after epic 3 month hunger strike

Submitted by Ali Abunimah on Tue, 07/10/2012 - 12:43

Palestinian footballer 
Sarsak was greeted joyously in Gaza today as he 
returned home from the Israeli prison where he 
was held for three years without charge or trial 
and without visits from his family.

to AP, Sarsak was taken to hospital in Gaza 
where, “he emerged from an ambulance and kissed his parents and siblings.”

Sarsak staged an epic three month hunger strike 
that brought him to the edge of death, which he 
ended last month after 
met his demands and agreed to free him on this date.

Sarsak, a member of the Palestinian national 
football team, garnered worldwide support, 
including from international players’ association 
boss Sepp Blatter, and 
world-renowned football players and athletes.

“Alive and victorious” – but other hunger strikers remain

Seventy-eight days into his hunger strike, Sarsak 
published a poignant 
distress call” along with fellow prisoner 
Rikhawi. In an unforgettable sentence that 
spurred global action on the prisoners’ behalf, the men wrote:

there is still enough time and the support that 
comes late is better than that which does not 
come at all. It is better that you receive us 
alive and victorious rather than as lifeless bodies in black bags.

Today, Mahmoud Sarsak returned home alive and 
victorious to the joyous embrace of his mother. 
But Akram Rikhawi remains in Israeli jail in 
increasingly desperate conditions, along with at 
least two other hunger strikers.

Mahmoud Sarsak’s victory and return is a joyful 
and amazing achievement that deserves to be 
celebrated. But even as Sarsak’s release is 
celebrated, Rikhawi remains at risk of death.

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