Palestinian singer Rim Banna began a hunger strike on Monday in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners languishing in Israeli jails who have been waging their own hunger strike for two weeks to demand better prison conditions.
According to United Press International (UPI), Banna started her hunger strike without any preparations. She simply wrote on a piece of cardboard, “I’m on hunger strike in solidarity with the 6,000 Palestinian and Arab prisoners in the occupation’s prisons” and stood in Ain Al-Azraa Square in the West Bank city of Nazareth.
Soon afterward, she was joined by some 40 supporters. Although Banna may not be able to continue her hunger strike indefinitely due to health issues, her initiative appears to have taken on a life of its own.
Banna is a well-known Palestinian singer and composer. Born in Nazareth, she began her musical career at the age of ten. She studied at Moscow’s Higher Institute of Music where she specialised in singing and conducting musical ensembles.
Most of her songs focus on the longstanding Palestinian struggle for nationhood and the many injustices inflicted upon the Palestinian people by the 63-year Zionist occupation.