[Ppnews] 95 Days of Hunger Strike: Act Now to Save Akram al-Rikhawi’s life!

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Sun Jul 15 17:25:29 EDT 2012

    95 Days of Hunger Strike: Act Now to Save Akram al-Rikhawi’s life!

by samidoun <http://samidoun.ca/?author=1>

Akram al-Rikhawi has now been on hunger strike for 95 days. He is the 
longest serving hunger striker anywhere in the world.  He is suffering 
from numerous medical conditions, including diabetes, asthma, high 
cholesterol, osteoporosis, glaucoma, kidney problems and immune 
deficiency. Addameer reports 
<http://addameer.org/etemplate.php?id=491> that “Prior to his arrest, 
Akram received injections of Kenacort to treat his asthma, but following 
his arrest, the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) did not allow Akram to take 
this injection. Instead, it was replaced with injections of cortisone, 
which is most likely the cause of severe complications, resulting in 
additional chronic illnesses such as diabetes and osteoporosis, from 
which Akram now suffers.” *Take action today to call for the immediate 
release of Akram al-Rikhawi! <#letter>*

Akram began his hunger strike on April 12 of this year to demand his 
early release due to his heath circumstances. He also has eight 
children, and he and his wife are also responsible for the care of the 
five children of his late brother. Despite his severe health 
circumstances and his difficult family and economic straits and 
responsibility for 13 children, his appeals for early release in 2012 
and on June 5, 2012 were both rejected 

He did not stop his hunger strike on May 14 at the time of the agreement 
between prisoners and the Israel Prison Services because his unique 
circumstances were not addressed – namely, early release on medical 
grounds. Physicians for Human Rights were denied access to Akram for 
nearly two months, until June 6 
He has lost 26.5% of his body weight – and was already very unhealthy. 
Akram has been refusing medical examinations since mid-May – and in 
response, the cortisone injections have only increased. PHR has stated 
that he must be transferred immediately to a civilian hospital in order 
to receive proper medical care, and filed suit to demand he be 
transferred – which was denied by an Israeli District Court on June 14 
<http://addameer.org/etemplate.php?id=491>. Since June 16, he has been 
refusing supplements and other forms of artificial nourishment that the 
Israeli prison hospital has attempted to impose on him.

He has now been on hunger strike for 95 days. He is in severe danger. 
International action is urgently needed to save his life! *It is urgent 
that we act now to free Akram Rikhawi and secure his much-needed medical 
care. <#letter>*

Akram al-Rikhawi is not the only Palestinian prisoner currently on 
hunger strike:

    * Samer al-Barq
      now been on hunger strike since May 22, for 55 days, protesting
      Israeli violations of the agreement with the prisoners – after his
      own administrative detention, rather than expiring as agreed by
      the Israelis at the end of the strike, was renewed for an
      additional three months. Samer al-Barq is now on hunger strike
      until his release is secured.
    * Hassan Safadi <http://www.addameer.org/etemplate.php?id=490>, a
      long-term hunger striker who had been striking for 71 days at the
      time the May 14 agreement was concluded, had his administrative
      detention order renewed by the Israelis on June 21, despite the
      explicit agreement that the long-term hunger strikers such as
      Safadi serving in administrative detention without charge or trial
      would not have those orders renewed. Safadi is now on his 25th day
      of hunger strike and plans to continue until he is released.

The Israeli Prison Services have continued to violate the May 14 
agreement in numerous ways - Dirar Abu Sisi remains in solitary 
confinement and another prisoner was recently moved to isolation. 
Although family visits to Gaza prisoners have now been announced, they 
will be "experimental," *apply only to 25 of the 479 prisoners and will 
exclude prisoners' children from visits* 

After his 96-day hunger strike, Palestinian soccer star Mahmoud Sarsak 
returned on July 10 
to his home in Gaza to a hero's welcome. It is urgent that we act now 
for all Palestinian prisoners to return to their families and homes like 
Sarsak. Administrative detention, mass roundups, and military trials are 
continuing in Palestine.  International solidarity and action is needed 
to hold the occupation accountable for its ongoing imprisonment and 
abuse of the people of Palestine!


*1. Sign a letter <#letter> demanding the Israeli state transfer Akram 
Rikhawi, Samer al-Barq and Hassan Safadi immediately to hospitals and 
release them. Tell the Israeli Prison Services that the world is 
watching! Click here to sign. <#letter>*

*2. Sign this letter, circulated by UFREE, to members of the European 
Parliament and demand action to save the life of Akram Rikhawi. 

*3. **Join a protest or demonstration outside an Israeli consulate for 
Palestinian prisoners. Many groups and organizations are holding events 
– join one or announce your own. *Organizing an event, action or forum 
on Palestinian prisoners on your city or campus? *Use this form to 
contact us 
<http://samidoun.ca/2012/04/submit-your-palestinian-prisoner-solidarity-activities-here/>* and 
we will post the event widely. /If you need suggestions, materials or 
speakers for your event, please contact us 
<http://samidoun.ca/contact-us/> at samidoun at samidoun.ca. /(The Ireland 
Palestine Solidarity Campaign has great materials, available at 

*4. Contact your government officials and demand an end to international 
silence and complicity with the repression of Palestinian political 
prisoners.* In Canada, Call the office of John Baird, Foreign Minister, 
and demand an end to Canadian support for Israel and justice for 
Palestinian prisoners, at : 613-990-7720; Email: bairdj at parl.gc.ca 
<mailto:bairdj at parl.gc.ca>. In the US, call the office of Elizabeth 
Jones, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs 
(1.202.647.7209). Demand that Elizabeth Jones bring this issue urgently 
to his counterparts in Israel.

*samidoun <http://samidoun.ca/?author=1>* | July 15, 2012 at 12:38 pm  | 
URL: http://wp.me/p2cx3f-lD

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