CAIRO: Five civil parties released a joint statement Wednesday announcing solidarity with political prisoners who started a hunger strike last week, adding that another prisoner called Hamada Noby chose to join them starting a hunger strike himself.
“Noby is going to start a hunger strike after trying all the rest of ways that didn’t work, as this choice remained the only way that we can bet on. We are betting with our young lives to take back our fair and natural rights,” read the statement, released by Al-Aish w Al-Horya party, Popular Current, Al-Dostor party, Masr Al-Horya and the Egyptian Social Democratic parties.
Noby announced his hunger strike after spending 75 days in prison charged with conducting illegal demonstrations in front of Shura Council November 2013, along with other 23 demonstrator including, Alaa Abdel Fattah and Wael Metwali.
In a letter, Noby said his reasons for starting the strike were; the “obvious arbitrariness” dealing with Shura Council case, poor conditions in the jail including solitary confinement, and being summoned to the terrorism court.
The final reason mentioned in the letter was Noby’s solidarity with Alaa Abdel Fattah and his family.
Abdel Fattah’s father, lawyer and human rights activist Ahmed Seif el-Islam, passed away in an intensive care unit in Qasr el-Aini Hospital Wednesday, according to a statement released by his family.
“We express our deep concern to prisoners, holding on minister of interior, attorney general and the president the whole responsibility if they were harmed physically or psychologically,” the joint statement said.
Jailed activists Ahmed Doma, Alaa Abdel Fattah, Wael Metwaly, Ahmed Maher, Mohamed Adel and finally Hamada Noby, announced earlier this week that they planned to begin a hunger strike according to Doma’s wife Nourhan Hefzy Facebook page Saturday.
She added that Abdel Fattah would start the hunger strike followed by the other detained activists.
On Aug. 19, Tora prison administration banned relatives of Nourhan Hefzy and other prisoners to visit, and threatened the activists that they would ban all visits and transfer them to other prisons, so they started an earlier strike, but it was ended as the prison promised it would not act on the threats.
Activist Mahienour el-Masry started a short hunger strike that ended Tuesday after her cellmates joined her, and according to Free Mahienour Facebook page, she feared for their lives as they were older and in poor health.
Al-Aish w Al-Horya party in Alexandria is organizing a symbolic hunger strike only for one day showing solidarity with the prisoners, starting Thursday 5 p.m. and continuing until Friday 5 p.m.
Using the slogans of #Gebna_Akherna or “we’ve had enough” and #Maraket_Alamaa_Alkhawya or “the empty stomach battle,” the activists are promoting their campaign on Twitter and Facebook.
“#Gebna_Akherna, spread it, this is the less that you can do for them” Hefzy wrote on her Facebook page last week.