Palestinian Prime Minister, Rami Hamdallah, on Sunday joined a sit-in in front of Bethlehem’s Nativity Church in the southern occupied West Bank, organized by activists, in solidarity with dozens of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons.
Hamdallah told families of prisoners and solidarity activists that his government and the Palestinian president “have always treated the prisoners’ issue as a top priority,” Bethlehem Governor, Muhammad Hamida, who heads a Bethlehem-based prisoners’ rights group, told Ma’an.
Hamdallah and his delegation were told by Hamida that both the governmental and Palestinians were needed in order to help hunger-striking prisoners in Israeli custody.
— Ma'an News Agency (@MaanNewsAgency) July 24, 2016
Several local and foreign delegations have visited the sit-in tent in the past few days to show solidarity, including a delegation of 200 people from different European countries, and an official delegation from Saudi Arabia.
The tent was installed on Thursday to call attention to the dozens of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners protesting the Israeli policy of administrative detention.
Member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Bilal Kayed, entered his 40th day without food on Saturday, in one of the most high-profile hunger strikes against administrative detention since Palestinian journalist Muhammad al-Qeq came near death during a 94-day hunger strike before he was finally released in May.
— Tekeste Tzeggai Corr (@TekesteC) July 24, 2016
Prisoners’ rights group, Addameer, stated that 7,000 Palestinians were being held by Israel as of May, 715 of whom were held in administrative detention.