Two prison blocks at Jau started their hunger strike on Monday, while three others started on Tuesday, Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei, an exiled activist in Britain with the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy said on Wednesday.
Alwadaei described those in the blocks taking part in the hunger strike as “political prisoners”.
In a statement published by Bahrain’s main opposition group, the al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, the prisoners said they started the hunger strike over prison officials blocking inmates from worshipping and 23-hour lockdowns daily.
The statement further said prison officials put inmates in isolation arbitrarily, interfered with family visits and provided inadequate healthcare to those imprisoned. Inmates are also barred from accessing education.
“Our demands are not trifles, but very necessary and required for human life, even at the lowest levels known to human history,” the prisoners’ statement read.
The hunger strike embodies the prisoners’ insistence on fundamental rights and dignity, and is a reminder that rights cannot be neglected, the statement said.
The prisoners put the number of those taking part in the strike in the hundreds.
Bahrain’s General Directorate of so-called Reform and Rehabilitation confirmed some inmates at Jau had “returned their meals” on Tuesday.
Videos posted on social media showed a solidarity protest in Sanabis, a village located on the outskirts of the capital, Manama. Demonstrators held up posters with slogans such as “Save Bahrain’s prisoners” and “Our sons are in danger”.
Source: Press TV#Bahrain 23-08-09
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