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Palestinian said to be longest-fasting hunger striker since 1981

An advocacy group says Palestinian detainee Mohammed al-Qiq has entered uncharted medical territory with a hunger strike of 89 days — longer than fasts by other Palestinians or by Irish prisoners in 1981.

Amani Dayif of Physicians for Human Rights-Israel says al-Qiq’s condition is rapidly deteriorating. She says no one else “has survived this much” time.

Faihaa al-Qiq, left, the wife of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoner Mohammed al-Qiq, demonstrates with fellow supporters in solidarity with him after Friday prayers in the West Bank town of Hebron on February 5, 2016. (AFP/HAZEM BADER)
Faihaa al-Qiq, left, the wife of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoner Mohammed al-Qiq, demonstrates with fellow supporters in solidarity with him after Friday prayers in the West Bank town of Hebron on February 5, 2016. (AFP/HAZEM BADER)

The case of al-Qiq, a Hamas activist, highlights Israel’s controversial practice of holding Palestinians without charge or trial, usually people suspected of terror activities.

Al-Qiq launched his hunger strike November 25 to win release from such detention.

His fate has been discussed in recent top-level meetings, including on Sunday by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and US Secretary of State John Kerry.

— Agencies

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