Saturday, July 4, 2009

URGENT: Mairead Maguire of the Free Gaza 21 is on a Hunger Strike

UPDATE: July 6, 2009 3:00 PM

By this time I'm sure you have read the reports that all of the Free Gaza 21 have been released from Israeli prisons. Here are the latest tweets from Free Gaza and Cynthia McKinney.
FREE GAZA: "FreeGaza21 signed NO DOCUMENTS in order to leave Israel. Were accused of entering Israel illegally. Israel dropped all charges."

CYNTHIA MCKINNEY: "Cynthia McKinney is on the plane and on her way HOME!"
Be sure to look for interviews with the activists once they return home in tonight's news.

I did manage to find a news story in a Irish news site that confirmed that Mairead Maguire was on a hunger strike before being released from prison. The article also mentions that she was being denied access to medicines for chronic conditions.
Ms Maguire was being held incommunicado in an Israeli prison yesterday, deprived since last week of thyroid and cholesterol medicines and a change of clothing. She was continuing with a fast begun on Friday in solidarity with the 1.5 million people of Gaza.
This is despicable behavior on the part of her Israeli captors. Just imagine - if this is the way they treat a 65 year old Nobel Peace Price laureate then how do they treat the thousands of Palestinians that are languishing in Israeli Prisons? And this is a point the Free Gaza movement brings up repeatedly - please don't focus on us, the real victims are the Palestinian People. In the words of Jenny Graham, the wife of Derek Graham who was one of the Free Gaza 21...
“Of course, I am very relieved to hear that my husband will be released unharmed. However, while Derek and the other 20 Free Gaza activists are to be freed, Gaza remains unfree, existing under the brutal Israeli siege which Derek, Mairead and the others set out to break in the first place. We must not forget this fact, and we in the Free Gaza Movement will not give up our fight to help the 1.5 million people of Gaza.” 

Latest Twitter message from Cynthia McKinney.
Mairead Maguire is 1 of the GAZA 21, imprisoned by the Israelis while on a humanitarian mission 2 Gaza...she started a hunger strike 4 Gaza!
That is all the information that is available right now. I searched the web and no one else is reporting this just yet. I'll update the story as new information comes in. Mairead Maguire is a Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Here is the caption from the above picture. It is from a previous Free Gaza trip which was successful in breaking the Israeli blockade of Gaza.
Irish Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead McGuire, who arrived in Gaza on the "Free Gaza" boat, left, holds a gift from Gaza's Prime Minister, Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas, right, at his office in Gaza City, Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2008. The boat carrying international protesters sailed into the Gaza Strip on Wednesday to bring attention to Israel's blockade of the Hamas-controlled territory. The 27 passengers include McGuire, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for her work in Northern Ireland. 
Follow Cynthia McKinney on Twitter.

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