Erekat appeals to EU to free Palestinian prisoner

April 17, 2013 18:21

Chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat has appealed to the European Union to intervene on behalf of Palestinian prisoner Samer Issawi, who has been conducting a hunger strike for nearly nine months while sitting in an Israeli prison and whose health is quickly deteriorating, British newspaper the Guardian reported on Wednesday.

In the letter, Erekat called on the EU to take "immediate and concrete steps" to bring about the release of Issawi. "Should Mr. Issawi die, we will...hold the international community partly responsible for its tolerance of Israel's appalling actions which have created this terrible situation," he added.

Issawi, who was originally sentenced in 2002 to 30 years in prison for terrorism-related activity, was released in 2011 as part of the Egypt-brokered Gilad Shalit and prisoner swap between Hamas and Israel. However he was arrested again in 2012 at a check point in the West Bank when the IDF said he had violated the terms of his release.

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