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Palestinians stage industrial action ahead of Trump visit

22 May 2017 16:30

 

Palestinians have begun a general strike in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to observe a “Day of Rage” in support of hunger-striking prisoners in Israeli jails ahead US President Donald Trump’s visit to the occupies territories.

The Palestinian Ma’an news agency said public places will be shut down on Monday, except schools and medical centers.

The industrial action had initially been called by a Palestinian national committee set up to support a mass hunger strike in Israeli prisons that is now on its 36th day.

Palestinian factions also released a statement, calling for “unity and assimilation with our brave prisoners,” as they threw their weight behind Monday’s general strike.

They slammed Washington’s support for the Israeli occupation and called on the Palestinian public to join the action in a bid to reject a possible resumption of talks with Israel under the US sponsorship.

Informed sources say the heath conditions of the Palestinian inmates refusing food has deteriorated, with some of them being taken to hospital.

Meanwhile, Israeli authorities continue to prevent access to the hunger strikers and keep them isolated from other prisoners.

Since April 17, more than 1,600 Palestinian prisoners have gone on hunger strike to demand appropriate medical care and treatment in Israeli jails as well as the right to pursue higher education.

They are also calling for an end to Israeli denial of family visits, solitary confinement and the so-called administrative detention, which is a form of imprisonment without trial or charge.

International organizations have called for pressure on the Tel Aviv regime to heed the inmates’ demands.

Nablus clashes

Separately on Monday, Ma’an reported clashes between Palestinian youths and Israelis in the West Bank city of Nablus.

Local sources said the scuffles broke out after hundreds of Israeli settlers, backed by regime forces, raided Nablus to hold a religious event at the site of Joseph’s Tomb.

Israeli troops fired tear gas as well as rubber and metal bullets at the Palestinians and made a number of arrests.

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