An Urgent Appeal in Defense of a Palestinian Journalist Who is on the Verge of Death

By Carlos Aznárez on January 30, 2016

The wife and the son of Muhammad Al-Qiq manifested for his freedom

The wife and the son of Muhammad Al-Qiq calling for his freedom

Remember his name; Muhammad Al-Qiq. He is 33 years old and is dying in prison following a hunger strike. He is a journalist in Palestine, a territory occupied and carved by the violence of the Israeli invaders in 1948.Palestine a nation that has suffered from all kinds of outrageous of abuse for decades with new twists of repression, appearing at any time, against those that rebel against its domain in Gaza and the West Bank. Wave of young people are protesting and many of them are being savagely assassinated. And many others are detained while the silence of the “international community” is deafening, manipulated by the churning of the corporate media.

However not all are silent. Muhammad Al-Qiq, like any self-respecting reporter, would tirelessly reported for channel Al Majd about what he saw and felt in the streets of Jerusalem or Ramalah. His reports were about children being beaten and detained for throwing stones at tanks, young women assassinated, fields of olives destroyed, houses demolished by pure revenge, towns such as Hebron or the Jenin refugee camps militarily blocked and its population suffering all kinds of humiliations.

The crime of Al-Qiq is precisely that he had reported objectively about the Israeli barbarism and for that reason he was arrested three months ago from his home in Ramallah and tortured in an Israeli jail. Numerous Palestinian and international human rights organizations have alleged that the journalist was placed in a position known as the banana – with his back on a chair and his hands and feet tied below. He has been forced to remain in that position for as long as 15 hours at a time while suffering violent sexual attacks by his interrogators. After suffering from these abuses he was sent to one of the many prison- tombs that Israel possesses to by martyred for not bowing down in front of such arrogant abuse.

As if all of this was not bad enough, Al-Qiq, like many other Palestinian men and women, is being held on “administrative detention” that allows the Israeli authorities to hold thousands in custody for just being labeled “suspicious” without any charges against them. This means, as military dictatorships do, there is no judicial process initiated because there are no charges.

Against this injustice, and convinced if he did not struggle for his freedom his fate was practically sealed, Al-Qiq began a hunger strike on November 25 of last year. After that the pressure and repressive measures against him intensified.

On two occasions, on December 30, 2015 and then again on January 17, Zionist judges extended his imprisonment and rejected the appeals filed by his lawyers. As the health of Al-Qiq began to deteriorate the authorities decided to transfer him to the Medical Center in the Israeli city of Afula. Despite this he vowed to continue his hunger strike until he wins his freedom and if this does not happen Al Qiq has said, “I am prepared to die.”

Muhammad Al-Qiq has been fighting for his dignity for 64 days now, refusing to receive vitamins or medical treatment. Perhaps he is evoking the martyrdom that happened decades ago to another similar freedom fighter from Ireland; Bobby Sands. He has clearly maintained that he does not want to be fed against his will.  Being a prisoner in Israel means to be on the edge of hell on Earth, and now another form of torture has been implemented on Al-Qiq. He has been bound hands and feet to a bed for four days while military nurses inject him with liquids by force.

From Argentina, the land where another exemplary journalist was lost in combat, Rodolfo Walsh, we send out this urgent message so that all over Latin America and the world, wherever there are people who believe that human rights are a legitimate self-defense against barbarism, we are mobilizing support for the life and freedom of Muhammad Al-Qiq. He, with his fearless character, brings to the surface a scenario of the conditions of thousands of Palestinian prisoners, many of whom are children being held hostage by the troops occupying their homeland.

I will say no more other than this cry: LET’S SAVE THE LIFE OF MUHAMMAD Al-QIQ and that of so many Palestinian men and women living in a State of emergency.

Translated by the North America Bureau, Resumen Latinoamericano

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Source: Resumen Latinoamericano