Moroccos Jailed Activist Nasser Zefzafi Begins Hunger Strike Again

Rabat – Jailed Hirak Rif activist Nasser Zefzafi has started a hunger strike to protest “torture” and “harassment” in Casablanca’s Oukacha prison.In a four-minute video, Nasser Zefzafi’s father, Ahmed Zefzafi, conveyed Zezafi’s message to all Moroccans that supported or did not support him.In the video, posted on Facebook Thursday, August 30, Zefzafi’s father said that his son told his mother that he would start a hunger strike and would not even drink water until he dies. Zefzafi’s decision was made in response to “harassment” and “torture” that he alleges he has suffered in the prison.Ahmed Zefzafi said that his son asked for “forgiveness” from all people, including those who do not support him.He also asked his mother to tell his family not to intervene in the hunger strike.According to his father, Zezafi is still being held in the small solitary cell where he was jailed before his trial.“He can only pray when he sits on a chair because the surface of the cell is too small.”“He is determined not to eat or drink until his demands are met. It is a strike of no return,” the father told AFP.“He only asks for the rights that other prisoners enjoy: that he be taken out of isolation in a solitary cell and put him in a dignified cell where he can see and talk” with the other jailed activists, added Ahmad.Zefzafi was arrested in May 2017 after he interrupted a Friday prayer in a mosque to protest the sermon’s content.In June, a court in Casablanca gave sentences ranging from 1 to 20 years for 54 Hirak Rif activists. Zefzafi and three other activists received 20 years in prison.On Eid alAdha, King Mohammed VI pardoned 188 prisoners involved in unauthorized protests in the Al Hoceima province.The protests erupted after the death of Mouhcine Fikri, a local fishmonger, who attempted to save his goods when they were confiscated and thrown in a garbage truck.Fikri jumped into the garbage truck and was crushed to death.More than 400 activists were arrested in a government crackdown of the protests.

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