Man has refused to eat anything for 78 days as part of global hunger strike

A man gone nearly 80 days without food as part of global hunger strike.

Imam Sis is slowly starving to death and his previously muscular physique is being eaten from within.

And as the 32-year-old is now approaching three months without any food, his kidneys are also starting to struggle.

And while the Newport man remains strong in spirit, he is becoming increasingly exhausted after a few minutes of conversation.

He also stopped passing faeces 30 days ago, reports Wales Online.

Since December 16 he has been on hunger strike, living on vitamin B1 and B12 tablets, and one fresh lemonade a day, supplemented with herbal teas and salty water.

He came to the UK from Turkey 14 years ago as a political refugee and has lived in Wales for the last five years.

He said: "The last couple of days I have hardly drank any liquid, it kills you and you get very bad headaches.

"I feel very tired even when I speak."

Imam’s hunger strike is part of a global movement which has seen over 300 Kurds on hunger strike.

The strikers are calling on the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) – a body responsible for investigating torture and human rights abuses in prisons – and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to investigate the alleged human rights abuses against a Kurdish leader.

Since 1999 the leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Abdullah Öcalan, has been incarcerated in Turkey.

Members of the Kurdish community in Wales say Öcalan has been in solitary confinement since 1999 and he hasn’t been allowed any visitors, family, or legal representation since September 2016.

Leyla Güven, a Kurdish MP to the Turkish Parliament has been on hunger strike for over 110 days and is now nearing death. Other strikers have already died during the campagn.

"You ask how I feel?" said Imam. "I feel strong.

"I have a lot of health issues. Even as we speak now I feel pain in my stomach.

"We might die. We are not doing this hunger strike to die. We love life, we love a free life but Kurdish people have no free life in the world. The 40 million have no freedom in the system. We are trying to change this.

"I don’t want to do this hunger strike.

"All the hunger strikers take B complex vitamins. This is not a death fast. We don’t want to die. I have already lost over 16kilos. That is over three stone. Your heart rate gets funny.

"We take no protein or carbs. We can go a maximum of 100 to 150 days. If our demands are not met we will go to the end. This will bring shame for the whole of humanity. I have strength in myself and I take strength from all of the support I am getting."

The PKK is considered a terrorist organisation by NATO, the UK and the EU. However Imam says that the Kurdish people are owed a debt by the world for the work they have done fighting against Islamic State.

"We are trying to get our dignity again," he said. "We have our rights as a human and as a nation.

"It was the Kurds who defeated Isis. They saved the world from Isis and the whole world owes the Kurdish people."

Imam’s campaign has been addressed in parliament with several MP’s tabling a motion.

Part of the  motion read  : "That this House is concerned that the hunger strike in Turkey by Leyla Güven MP of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) has reached its third month and that she is in a critical condition; notes that her protest has inspired others to hunger strike, including Ilhan Sis in Newport, South Wales, UK who is now on an indefinite hunger strike, and that 156 other Kurds held in Turkish prisons are now also on indefinite hunger strikes."

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