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Vision loss for Palestinian hunger striker

Sept. 27, 2012 at 8:28 AM

BETHLEHEM, Israel, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- A Palestinian man being held by Israel without charges is almost totally blind and has severe kidney damage after 89 days on hunger strike, a lawyer said.

Authorities arrested Ayman Sharawna on Jan. 31 for unknown reasons after he was released from prison in October 2011 in a prisoner exchange between Israel and Hamas. He had spent nearly a decade in an Israeli prison before his 2011 release.

He, along with two other Palestinian prisoners -- Hassan Safadi and Samer al Barq -- are suffering from various physical problems from prolonged hunger strikes for being detained without charges, the Palestinian news agency Maan reported Wednesday.

Fares Ziad, a lawyer for prisoner rights group Addameer, said Sharawna, 37, has lost vision in his left eye and 80 percent of vision in his right eye. The father of nine is also suffering from severe kidney problems and partial memory loss.

Addameer said court hearings for Sharawna's case have been repeatedly postponed.

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