Clashes in Judea and Samaria over hunger strike

Masked Arabs attack IDF forces in Judea and Samaria in riots in support of hunger-striking terrorists in Israeli prisons.

Arutz Sheva Staff and AFP ,

Arab riot (file)
Arab riot (file)
Flash 90

Clashes erupted in Judea and Samaria on Thursday between Israeli soldiers and hundreds of
Palestinian Arabs protesting in support of hunger strikers in Israeli jails, leaving at least two people wounded.

The two protesters were hit by rubber bullets and evacuated on stretchers with bloodied legs, an AFP journalist reported.

Youths wearing hoods or masks threw stones at Israeli soldiers, who responded with rubber bullets and water canon containing foul-smelling liquid.

The clashes broke out at a checkpoint at the entrance to Ramallah and near Beit El, the site of regular anti-Israel demonstrations.

The protest was called in support of hundreds of jailed terrorists who have been engaged in a hunger strike in Israel since April 17.

"We are entering an extremely critical period" for the hunger strikers, Qadura Fares, head of the Palestinian Prisoners Club, said earlier at a rally in Ramallah.

"A large number of prisoners can no longer move from their bed or take care of their basic needs."

The Red Cross visited the leader of the hunger strike, Marwan Barghouti, on Thursday for the first time since it began.

An ICRC spokesman was unable to provide an update on his health "in accordance with the principles of medical confidentiality".

Hunger strikers have issued a list of demands including better medical services, family visits and more dignified detention conditions, as well as classes at Haifa University and access to more television channels.

Israel says conditions meet all international standards.

Barghouti, a senior member of the Fatah-Tanzim terror group and a highly popular figure among Palestinian Arabs, is serving five life sentences over his role in a series of deadly terror attacks against Israelis.

Earlier this week, Israel produced footage they said showed him secretly breaking his fast in his cell.