The University of Florida stands in solidarity with Samer Issawi. (Fight Back! News/Staff)
Gainesville, FL – On March 21, Palestine solidarity activists came together on the University of Florida campus to protest inhumane Israeli prison conditions and the mistreatment of political prisoner Samer Issawi. In the middle of a 24-hour solidarity hunger strike, students sat in the center of Turlington plaza with blindfolds over their eyes and duct tape over their mouths.
“We are here in solidarity with Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi to demand an end to his unjust confinement in Israeli prison,” stated Farah Khan, an organizer with the University of Florida chapter of Students for a Democratic Society and UF Students for Justice in Palestine. Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi has been on a protracted hunger strike. Two weeks ago, he began refusing water.
Rami Okasha, vice president of UF Students for Justice in Palestine noted, “Samer Issawi is not just protesting his own treatment. Both his brother and his sister have been detained before. He, like other strikers past and present, is on hunger strike for all Palestinian political prisoners. Rather than people – especially here in the United States – criticizing Palestinians for violence, while ignoring Israel’s acts of aggression, they should start recognizing these extreme acts of non-violence and courage.”
In violation of international law, Issawi has experienced psychological torture and up to 22 hours per day of interrogation. He has also been denied a lawyer for many days at a time. No evidence has come to light justifying Issawi’s imprisonment. Evidence of abuse and torture, however, can be seen from the bruises on his body.
Students for a Democratic Society organizer Conor Munro stated, “Political prisoners like Samer Issawi are making huge sacrifices for the Palestinian cause. We need to stand in solidarity with them and with those targeted by repression in our own country.”
As of March 21, Samer Issawi remains in confinement under Israeli jurisdiction.
The UF chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine organized this action as one of many during their “Palestine Solidarity Month.” For more information about UF SJP, please visit their facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/UF-SJP/492026674165807?fref=ts
Read a letter of Samer Issawi – On Day 209 of hunger strike
- For Translation in English by Rona Merril, Neta Golan click here
- Pour la traduction en Français par ISM France (@ISMFRANCE) cliquez ici
- For Translation in Dutch by Dr. Tariq Shadid (@Docjazzmusic) click here
Featured Music Video | HUNGRY! | by @DocJazzMusic
A journal published by Adalah, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel and Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights | June 26, 2012
“On Torture” is an edited volume of essays by Palestinian, Israeli and international legal and medical experts and practitioners based on presentations that they gave during a workshop held in Jerusalem in April 2011 entitled, “Securing Accountability for Torture and Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment (CIDT) in Israel: New Trends and Comparative Lessons”.
The essayists explore the history of torture in Israel, the daily challenges that practitioners face in seeking accountability for torture and CIDT in Israel, and the changing face of torture.
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