1200 imprisoned Palestinian terrorists launch hunger strike

Barghouti, along with Karim Younis, Maher Younis and Mahmoud Abu Sorour, were isolated and placed in solitary confinement at the Jalameh prison in northern Israel after being transferred from Hadarim Prison, located some 20 kilometers from Tel Aviv.

In the West Bank town of Ramallah, Barghouti's wife, Fadwa, joined about 1,500 marchers.

There are fears that the hunger strike - observed by 1187 detainees, according to Israel's prison service - could fuel tensions across the Palestinian areas.

The protests, which is the biggest in recent years, has been led by jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti and will see prisoners from across the political spectrum participate from within six Israeli prisons. Israel charged him with directing suicide bombings and he was sentenced to five life terms.

Furthermore, the Palestinian Detainees' Committee and the Palestinian Prisoner Society have reported that the prison authority in Galboa' Israeli prison has prevented the lawyers from visiting with hunger striking detainees. Israeli side will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of its occupation in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem in June 2017.

The hunger strikers' long list of demands includes an end to solitary confinement and administrative detention, a policy where Israel holds prisoners without charge or trial.

Israeli Prison Service (IPS) spokesman Assaf Librati warned that the hunger strikers would face punishment. Palestinian officials and activists estimated the number of participants to be as many as 1,500.

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Issa Qaraqe, head of the Palestinian prisoners commission, had told local media outlets that about 1 300 prisoners were protesting over grievances including medical negligence, administrative detention, limited family visits and violations of the UN Geneva Convention. Polls suggest that the 58-year-old Barghouti is the most popular choice among Palestinians to succeed the 82-year-old Abbas. Nowhere is there any reference to Barghouti's leadership of the Palestinian terror group Tanzim, or his multiple murder convictions.

"Mr. Barghouti declined to offer a defense at his trial and refused to recognize the Israeli court's jurisdiction and legitimacy", the editors note read.

His revelation of the daily struggles of more than 6,000 Palestinian political prisoners languishing in Israeli prisons and the ambition behind their hunger strike was, apparently, too sensitive for USA readers.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the New York Times has since "recanted" the article.

He said the strike was part of an internal Palestinian struggle for power. "It is to be emphasized that the (Prisons Service) does not negotiate with prisoners".

"There is no reason to give them additional conditions in addition to what they already receive", he said.

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