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Four protesters on hunger strike in Oman prison

The striking prisoners are among 14 sentenced to jail for Sohar protest in 2011

Gulf News

Muscat Four of the 14 spending time in high-security Central Prison in Sumayil for their role in Sohar Protests in 2011 have gone on hunger strike from today, demanding their release and end to sufferings of their family members.

“The four had given a letter one week ago to the prison authorities about their intentions to go on hunger strike,” Ali Hilal al Muqabali, a Sohar-based activist, who was recently released after Sultan Qaboos Bin Saeed announced pardon, informed Gulf News.

He said that Hilal Al Alawi, Khalid Al Badi, Khalid Al Alawi all from Saham and Khalid Al Saeedi from Sohar have gone on hunger strike inside prison.

He also added that the four have sent a copy of their letter, given to the prison authorities, to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and have appealed them to end their prison term.

“They have urged authorities to look at the sufferings of their children, parents and other family members due to their time in prison,” he added.

There are 14 serving prison terms, seven for five years and others are sentenced to 30 months for their alleged role in violent protests that rocked Sohar in 2011. In February, 23 activists had gone on hunger strike demanding speedy trials.

After that the Supreme Court had ordered retrial for eight activists held for wrongful gathering in Muscat in May last year.

However, before the Appeal Court could conclude the retrial Sultan Qaboos Bin Saeed pardoned all activists, who held for insulting the Sultan as well as wrongful gathering.