September 26, 2016

Ahmad Sa'adat denied family visits for three more months: will launch hunger strike on Tuesday with hundreds of Palestinian prisoners

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Ahmad Sa’adat, imprisoned Palestinian political leader and General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, announced that he and his comrades in all Israeli prisons will launch an open hunger strike on Tuesday, 11 August, following a new military order forbidding Sa’adat from family visits for another three months. He has been denied all family visits for nearly two years.

Following the violent Israeli raids on Nafha prison in which Sa’adat was injured, there are now 180 Palestinian political prisoners on hunger strike in protest of the raids, transfers, isolation and threatened force-feeding of long-term hunger striker Muhammad Allan. The PFLP’s prisoners had previously announced a strike on Sunday, delayed to Wednesday, but now scheduled to begin on Tuesday:

The prison branch of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, headed by national leader Ahmad Sa’adat, will launch an open hunger strike on Tuesday [11 August], following a stalemate in the negotiations with the Prison administration, brought about by the Prison Service’s intransigence in response to the just demands of the prisoners. In addition, today a military order was issued extending the security prohibition against leader Sa’adat, denying him family visits for an additional three months.

The prison branch confirmed that the Front’s prisoners, led by Sa’adat, have decided to fight a long and difficult battle with the occupation which is not conditioned by any covenants or undertakings, after exhausting all options in order to impel the occupier to respond to the demands of the prisoners.

The PFLP prisoners called on the masses of our people, the Arab and Muslim communities and countries, and the forces of justice and freedom in the world to provide the widest support and solidarity to the struggle of the prisoners’ national movement in the battles of confrontation and steadfastness they are waging around the clock against the prison and intelligence officials of the occupation. The breadth and depth of solidarity gives prisoners inspiration to continue the struggle until their rights are achieved in full.

The demands of the strike are as follows:

  •  allowing family visits for prisoners who have been, until now, prohibited from such visits with their loved ones, including Palestinian political leader Ahmad Sa’adat;
  • providing necessary and adequate medical care to sick prisoners;
  • ending the policy of administrative detentions
  • improving the living conditions inside the prisons
  • prohibiting invasions and raids by special units of the Zionist forces, including the Metsada unit, on the sections and cells of the prisoners.

The Campaign to Free Ahmad Sa’adat urges the broadest international solidarity and action to support Ahmad Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinian political prisoners on hunger strike:

1. Sign on to this statement in support of the prisoners’ demands. Organizational and individual endorsements are welcome – and organizational endorsements particularly critical – in support of the prisoners’ demands and their actions. Click here to sign: http://bit.ly/HungerStrikeSolidarity

2. Send a solidarity statement with Ahmad Sa’adat and his fellow Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. Please send your statements to campaign@freeahmadsaadat.org.

3. Protest at the Israeli consulate or embassy in your area and build the campaign for the boycott and isolation of Israel. Bring posters and flyers about Palestinian hunger strikers and hold a protest, or join a protest with this important information. Include Palestinian prisoners in the campaign to boycott Israeli products and institutions: see Sa’adat’s latest call for boycott action.