Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network is republishing the statement below from Canadian artists and cultural workers in support of Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike.  Artistic and cultural solidarity with the prisoners has been a strong aspect of international support, from developing images for social media to various artistic interventions and protests. The involvement of cultural workers and artists in this struggle is not limited to solidarity; the art of Palestinian prisoners themselves is a testimony to the power of resistance and liberation culture for the Palestinian liberation struggle and all struggles for justice:

Image by Cross Stitching Solidarity

Statement of support by Canadian Artists and Cultural Workers for Palestinian Political Prisoners Hunger Strike – April/May 2017

“Hunger striking is the most peaceful form of resistance available. It inflicts pain solely on those who participate and on their loved ones, in the hopes that their empty stomachs and their sacrifice will help the message resonate beyond the confines of their dark cells.”

 Marwan Barghouti, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council and leader of hunger strike

Palestinian political prisoners in Israel’s prisons have been on a hunger strike since April 17, 2017 to bring attention to the deplorable and illegal conditions in prison demanding: longer and frequent family visits, access to phone, improved medical conditions, access to education, end to administrative detention and other demands.

Numbering over 1,500 prisoners (out of a prison population of 6,000+) they have risked their life and ongoing health to gain public exposure. Yet despite being in its sixth week and entering a critical stage, western corporate media has barely covered the strike and is complicit in perpetuating this grave injustice. Hunger strikes like all legitimate protest require public awareness via media exposure to be effective.

We demand that the Canadian government put pressure on Israel to end its illegal policies and practices regarding political prisoners. We demand that the Canadian media inform the Canadian public by beginning to adequately cover the hunger strike.

Signatures:

Jamelieh Hassan, artist, London, ON

Jayce Salloum, artist, Vancouver

Kirsty Robertson, professor, London, ON

Rehab Nazzal, artist, Toronto

Gale Coskan-Johnson, professor,  St. Catharines

Mathiew Aubin, grad student, Vancouver

Jeff Fedoruk, graduate student, Toronto

Reuben Jentikle, educator, Vancouver

Mathew Arthur, activist, Vancouver

Shaun Stevenson, graduate student, Ottawa

Jennifer Hanrdem, professor, Carleton U, Ottawa

Madeleine Roelder graduate student, Vancouver

Margenuy Fu, Professor, Vancouver

Ana Bilbao, London

Patrick Mahon, artist, professor, London, ON

Ashok Mathun, Poet

Erin Moure, Writer, Montreal

Sawako Ono, Toronto

Glen Cameron, Toronto

Ana Brarajas, Toronto

Valerie Severino, artist, Toronto

Faten Toubasi, artist, Toronto

Mark Brill, artists, activist, Toronto

Taryn Sirove, art historian, Toronto

Michael Farnan, artist, Victoria, ON

Ryan Toews, professor, Toronto, ON

Lilian Cavigliz, RN, Toronto

Ashley McFarlane, artist, Toronto.

Robert Masoud, cultural organizer, Toronto

Michelle Wilson, artist, London, ON

Rita Wong, writer, Vancouver

Dot Tuer, writer, professor, Toronto

Dian Janzen, Toronto

Mohamad Khairy, graduate student, Toronto

Amal Owaineh, Toronto

Kate Ellis, Toronto

Tina Benigno, graduate student, Toronto

Jim Miller, artist, filmmaker, Toronto

Chris Gehman Filmmaker, Toronto

Wanda Vander Stoop, Cultural worker, Toronto

Shawk Alani, Toronto

Natalle Dunlop, cultural worker, Toronto

Susan Dicks, designer, Toronto

Joshow Mofowad-Paul, professor, Toronto

Pamila Mathary, Artist and educator, Toronto

James Kirkpatrick, artist, Toronto

Rachel Gorman, professor, Toronto

Norman Richmond, Black Power 96, Toronto

Kinana Issa, writer, artist, Toronto

Lindsay Hodgson, Toronto

J Madsen, Toronto

Sarah Abu-Sharar, storyteller, Mississauga

Jon Short, professor, Toronto

Nayrous Abu Hatoum, Toronto

Basil Alzeri, Toronto

Karen Rodman, Totonto

Nathania Lavis, Toronto

Ineke Metcaflfe, Toronto

Orev Reena Katz, artist, Toronto

B.H. Yael, artist, Toronto

Malinda Francis, artists, Toronto

Lama Abdul-Rahman, Toronto

Rebecca Garrett, artists, educator

Niloufar Salimi, artist

Amy Wang, artist, Toronto

Polly Wang, Toronto

Ron Benner, artist, London, Ontario

David Heap, professor, London, ON

Jennifer Slauenwhite, London, ON

Troy Quellette, Artist, London, ON

Christine Conley, curator, art historian

Lorraine Gilbert, professor, Ottawa

Elain Mcllwraith, grad student, London, ON

Sue Goldstein, Toronto