The Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR) has learnt that Human Rights Defender Mr.Abdulhadi Alkhawaja (51 years) is determined to continue in his hungerstrike until he secures his release. Family members have informed the BYSHR that although Mr. Alkhawaja was in high spirits, he looked thin and weak and had obvious problems concentrating.
Mr.Alkhawaja also confirmed that he had collapsed last Wednesday and was transferred to the Bahrain Defense Force Hospital after a sharp drop in his sugar and blood pressure. He was first transferred to the Jaw Prison clinic but when medics saw his condition they quickly called for an ambulance. He was semi unconscious when he was transported via an ambulance to the hospital where he suffered from muscle spasms. He received treatment but refused to end his hungerstrike.
It is important to note that this is the second hungerstrike the activists engages in with only 2 days in between, the first which was with the other 13 detained activists in protest to the ongoing human rights violations and which lasted for 1 week. The activist is currently in his 10th day of his second hungerstrike. This has contributed to the deterioration in is health condition.
Mr.Alkhawaja stated that he was on hungerstrike because as a human rights activist he needs to play a role in exposing human rights violations, whether he be on the inside or the outside of a prison cell. The hungerstrike aims to secure his release, but more importantly allow him the opportunity to do something inside prison to shed light on the deteriorating human rights situation in the country. He said that those who claim to defend human rights need to be prepared to make sacrifices, and that he was prepared for all possible consequences of this hungerstrike. He also wanted to highlight the plight of those prisoners of conscience still detained and shed light on their cause.
The BYSHR supports and respects Human Rights Defender Mr.Abdulhadi Alkhawaja’s decision to continue his hungerstrike and calls on the international community to stand behind him in order to secure his release and support his plight in highlighting the human rights violations happening in the Kingdom of Bahrain.