Ma’an News Agency | – –
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A general strike was held across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem on Thursday, as thousands of Palestinians shut down their shops and businesses in solidarity with some 1,500 Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike as part of the “Freedom and Dignity” strike, organized by imprisoned Fatah leader Marwan Barghouthi.
Hundreds of Palestinians imprisoned by Israel have been participating in the hunger strike since April 17 to protest the torture, ill treatment, and medical neglect of prisoners at the hands of Israeli authorities, as well as Israel’s widespread use of administrative detention — internment without trial or charges.
Head of the Palestinian Committee for Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Qaraqe released a statement on Wednesday saying that IPS forces had “continued to escalate punitive measures” against prisoners, which started on the first day of the strike, with IPS forces transferring prisoners and leaders of the strike to solitary confinement, and preventing lawyers from visiting prisoners, particularly sick prisoners.
The occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina: