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Hunger-striking Palestinian journalist on brink of death: Official

Muhammed al-Qiq, a Palestinian prisoner on hunger strike, is seen in a hospital in the town of Afula, February 5, 2016. (AFP)

A Palestinian journalist who has been on hunger strike under Israel's detention since last November is “on the brink of death,” a Palestinian Authority (PA) official says.

Muhammed al-Qiq, who has been refusing food since November 25 in protest against torture and mistreatment by Israeli soldiers and his detention with no charge or trial, is facing a worsening health condition, Hiba Masalha, a lawyer for the PA Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, said on Friday.  

“He is on the brink of death, and we might hear news of his martyrdom at any moment, especially due to fears that he might suffer from a stroke," Masalha noted.

She also added that Qiq was suffering from acute chest and heart pains, fever, severe pain in the knees and extremities and recurrent muscle spasms.

In another development, a number of Palestinians staged a rally in support of Qiq after Friday prayers in the town of Afula. They condemned Qiq’s detention and called for his immediate release.

"Pray for the victory of the prisoner who is being held hostage, oppressed and detained without reason," said Salah, a protester.

The 33-year-old Palestinian was arrested on November 21 at his home in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah. The Israeli regime claims he has been involved in “terrorism activities” linked to Palestinian resistance group Hamas.

Qiq, who has lost the ability to speak due to the hunger strike, has said he will continue the strike until “martyrdom or freedom.”

On February 9, Amnesty International also warned that the Palestinian detainee is facing an imminent risk of death. 

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