éirígí held vigils in Belfast and Newry yesterday [February 11] in solidarity with hunger-striking Palestinian prisoner Khader Adnan.
Adnan has been on hunger strike since his arrest by Irsaeli military forces on 17th December 2011. He is protesting against being held in administrative detention – internment without charge or trial for up to six months, which can be repeated indefinitely. He is shackled to a bed and is being tortured and interrogated, and is also not permitted to wash or shower. Khader Adnan has now been joined on hunger strike by his comrades.
Palestinian prisoners have for years experienced degrading treatment and humiliating conditions at the hands of the Israeli Prison Administration. Their friends and families on the outside have to also endure shameful treatment just to get to visit their loved ones, and sometimes even this can’t happen as detainees are routinely moved from one prison to another with little notice.
Speaking at the Newry vigil, éirígí’s Stephen Murney said, “The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine called upon all Palestinian and international organisations and activists to join in a campaign of solidarity with the hunger striking prisoner and to launch protests and solidarity actions in support of Khader Adnan.
“So here we are here today to show solidarity with our comrades in Palestine who are currently on hunger strike. We have deliberately picked this location, Ray McCreesh Park, for obvious reasons. Over thirty years ago Raymond McCreesh and his comrades also embarked on hunger strike and paid the ultimate sacrifice in doing so.”
Murney continued, “Unsurprisingly the PSNI made a very deliberate and obvious decision that they would target today’s vigil and those taking part in it. This morning, several hours before the vigil, I was stopped and searched in the Derrybeg estate by the PSNI. I was searched for ammunition, wireless apparatus and transmitters, they then attempted, unsuccessfully, to question me about the vigil we would be having. The zionists would be proud of the actions of this militia today.
“éirígí will continue with our local, national and international campaigns. Internationalism and internationalist solidarity have always been a central theme of Irish republicanism. éirígí understands that now, more than ever, the struggle for an Ireland free of the twin fetters of capitalism and imperialism is integrally linked to the wider international struggle of the poor and oppressed against the rich and powerful.
“For this reason éirígí is committed to building links with progressive organisations and individuals internationally as well as assisting various solidarity campaigns based in Ireland.”