Group of prisoners on hunger strike to demand unity
Occupied Nablus-Arab Nyheter
Eight Palestinians jailed in Israel have been on hunger strike for a week to demand Palestinian factions implement a reconciliation deal, the Palestinian Prisoners Society said Sunday.
The prisoners said they will not eat until political parties end the five-year division between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Another group of detainees will join the hunger strike on the anniversary of the split on June 14, the group said.
"We chose this time specifically to tell all those who are thinking of procrastinating with the reconciliation process that we won’t allow that to happen, even if we pay the price with our lives for the implementation of the reconciliation," hunger striker Nasser Al-Shawish told the society.
For seven days, Nasser Al-Shawish, Mohammad Hamama, Abdul Atheem Abdul Haq, Issa Zain Al-Din, Abdul Rahman Othman in Gilboa prison and Nasser Abu Kushk, Ahed Nasasrah and Bilal Bahloul in Shatta jail, have been on hunger strike.
Hamas and Fatah have led separate governments in Gaza and the West Bank since they split amid bitter fighting in 2007.
In May 2011, Fatah leader President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas chief Khalid Mashaal pledged in Cairo to form a government to prepare for elections within one year. The deal stalled as factions continued to trade accusations over its implementation.
In recent weeks party leaders again pledged to establish a unity government of technocrats to oversee elections, after the electoral body was given the green light by the Hamas government in Gaza to start preparations for a poll.