FIFPro, the association representing professional footballers in dozens of countries, called on Israel immediately to release Mahmoud Sarsak, a Palestinian football player who has been on hunger strike since March to protest his detention for three years without charge or trial by Israel.
“FIFPro, the voice of all professional footballers in the world, demands that Mahmoud Sarsak be released from prison,” the statement begins.
The statement from FIFPro marks the first high-level attention to Sarsak’s case from professional football. However it is not a moment too soon given his grave health situation. more
Update: Egypt's Ahram Online is reporting that the Israeli Prison Serviceis claiming that Mahmoud Sarsak has ended his hunger strik but this has been denied by his family.
-- on the London protest for Mahmoud Sarasak (see video above) On 5th June 2012 a protest was held in London to bring attention to the plight of Palestinian prisoner Mahmoud Sarsak who is on his 80 day of hunger strike and on the verge of dying, which has been largely ignored by the corporate media, including the BBC.
The protest commenced from the Palestine Place, a reclaimed space near Chancery Lane, and moved through central London including Oxford Street, stopping at the headquarters of the BBC, then on to Marble Arch and culminating in Hyde Park.
Mahmoud Sarsak, a professional footballer from Rafah refugee camp in gaza, has been imprisoned by Israel for 3 years without charge or trial.
He was abducted by Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint while on his way to join the Palestine National Football Team for a match in Balata refugee camp in the West Bank.
Mahmoud has now been on hunger strike for 80 days to protest being held without charge or reason for 3 years and to be allowed to defend himself as is his most basic right under international law.
After nearly three months without food, Mahmoud Sarsak has lost his sight and hearing and is on the verge of dying..
A finale plea from Mahmoud Sarsak and fellow prisoner Akram Rikhawi, received from inside prison on 3rd june 2012:
"To the freedom loving people of the world, we cry out to you, and to all people in the worl who believe in the justice of our cause: Do not abandon us to the vindictive hands of the jailers to take what they want from our frail bodies..
We say: There is still enough time and the support that comes late is better than that which does not come at all.. It is better that you receive us alive and victorious rather than as lifeless bodies in black bags.." more
- Mahmoud Sarsak and Akram Rikhawi sent a letter to the Palestinian people in which they said "There is still enough time, and the support that comes late is better than that which does not come at all. It is better that you receive us alive and victorious rather than as lifeless bodies in black bags. Our people, our leaders in Gaza, in the West Bank and outside, and freedom loving people of the world, we cry out to you, and to all people in the world who believe in the justice of our cause: do not abandon us to the vindictive hands of the jailers to take what they want from our frail bodies."
Three Palestinians prisoners are still on hunger strike, they are: Mahmoud Sarsak, Akram Rikhawi and Samer Al-Barq more