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PA health minister calls on rights groups to save hunger striker

Palestinian prisoner in Israeli jail Maher Al-Akhras, who is in a hunger strike for 80 days, speaks to media, receiving medical treatment at hospital in Rehovot, Israel on 14 October 2020. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]
Palestinian prisoner in Israeli jail Maher Al-Akhras, who is in a hunger strike for 80 days, speaks to media, receiving medical treatment at hospital in Rehovot, Israel on 14 October 2020. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]

The Palestinian Minister of Health, Mai Al-Kaila, called on Wednesday for international human rights groups to intervene immediately and help save the life of hunger striker Maher Al-Akhras who is being held by Israel. Al-Akhras has been on hunger strike for 80 days.

“A Palestinian father is dying of starvation while handcuffed to his bed in an Israeli hospital, as the occupying power refuses to release him despite his deteriorating health,” said Al-Kaila. She added that the world’s silence over what is happening in Israel’s Kaplan Hospital encourages the occupation state to continue its denial of the simplest humane treatment to Palestinian prisoners.

“Al-Akhras has severe pain, suffers from frequent fainting, has difficulty speaking, is unable to walk and has lost more than 25 kilograms,” the minister pointed out. She said that she holds Israel responsible for his life.

The 49-year-old Al-Akhras is from Jenin in the northern West Bank. He has been held since 27 July under an administrative detention order with neither charge nor trial, and can be detained indefinitely. His hunger strike is a protest against such inhuman treatment.

READ: Palestinian factions condemn PA crackdown on West Bank protests 

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