hunger strikes

The predominantly Tamil northern province of Sri Lanka was at a “complete standstill” on October 13, according to Tamilnet. All public and private businesses were shut down.

The strike was called by 20 grassroots movements to demand the unconditional release of all Tamil political prisoners.

Protesters blocked the A9 highway, and blockaded the secretariat of the Colombo-appointed governor of the Northern Province.

The next day protesters with black flags confronted Sri Lankan president Maithripala Sirisena who was visiting a school in Jaffna.

The hunger strike launched in April by more than 1500 Palestinian prisoners ended on May 27 when the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) agreed to key concessions to improve the prisoners’ conditions.

The announcement of the end of the 41-day hunger strike, coinciding with the start of Ramadan, was greeted with relief and joy by prisoners’ families and supporters across Palestine and the world. By the time the deal to improve conditions to end the hunger strike was struck, about 800 prisoners were still participating.

After 40 days without food, hundreds of Palestinian prisoners have suspended their hunger strike in Israeli jails.

The end of the strike came after 20 hours of intense negotiations between the strike’s leaders, including imprisoned Fatah figure Marwan Barghouti, and the Israel Prison Service, according to a statement issued on the morning of May 27 by the prisoners solidarity committee.

A young Palestinian man became the first victim of the open-ended hunger strike launched 1600 Palestinian political prisoners in the occupied West Bank on May 1. The 30-year-old, identified as Mazan al-Maghrebi, passed away at his home in the city of Ramallah, where he was on hunger strike in solidarity with the prisoners. 


Muhammad Allan and Uday Isteiti. Picture: Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.

Khader Adnan, Palestinian political prisoner and former long-term hunger striker, won his release from administrative detention this year. In a video issued on July 19, he called for action to support fellow hunger strikers Muhammad Allan and Uday Isteiti.

The Refugee Action Coalition released this statement on February 5.

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Fifteen Iranian asylum seekers are on their 19th day of hunger strike in Darwin’s Wickham Point detention centre.

Meanwhile, Martin, who has been on hunger strike since November last year, is very weak and close to death.

Martin and the 15 are part of a group of about 35 Iranian asylum seekers who are being held indefinitely in detention. The government is unable to remove them to Iran because the Iranian government refuses to accept forced removals from Australia.

The Cross Border Collective released this statement on January 28.

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Thousands of men, women and children held in Australia’s detention camps are growing increasingly desperate in their second year of incarceration in camps described as “hellholes”.

The statement below was released by Resistance Young Socialist Alliance on January 20.

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Popular concern grows for the well-being of refugees in detention, as more than 700 asylum seekers on Manus Island enter their eighth day of hunger strike, and up to 200 are suffering dehydration.

Witnessing an outpour of reports detailing increasingly desperate acts of self harm, the Australian public stands up to say enough to the torture of refugees, and calls on the Coalition government for compassion.

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