Princeton students now hunger striking for Gaza because school officials are ignoring their demands

Protesting anti-Israel students at Princeton University have entered into a hunger strike to voice their displeasure with the fact that the school has yet to bow to their ridiculous demands.

“We wanted to make clear to them how serious we are about them coming to the tables and discussing our demands, which are divestment and also amnesty for both on the criminal, legal and also disciplinary charges,” one protester named David told NJ Spotlight News.

“We wanted to take an action that would be a gesture of solidarity with the Palestinian people, especially in regards to their immense suffering that they’ve been going through since October 7th with Israeli policies,” he added.

Another protester, Sameer, concurred.

“Everything that we have been doing up to this day has been because we are being ignored,” he said. “This encampment has started because we were ignored. … And now we have about 13 students hunger striking because we are still being ignored.”

The hunger strike was officially launched by the Princeton Israeli Apartheid Divest (PIAD) student organization via Instagram:

“PRINCETON STUDENTS LAUNCH HUNGER STRIKE IN SOLIDARITY WITH GAZA ‼️” the post above reads.

“Participants will abstain from all food and drink (except water) until our demands are met. We commit our bodies to their liberation of Palestine. PRINCETON, hear us now! We will not be moved!” it continues.

The protesters also held a press conference of sorts.

“The Princeton-Gaza Solidarity Encampment announces the initiation of a hunger strike in solidarity with the millions of Palestinians in Gaza suffering under the ongoing siege by the state of Israel,” the protesters said. “The Israeli occupation has deliberately blocked access to basic necessities to engineer a dire famine for the two million resident of Gaza.”

“Since the announcement on Oct. 9th by the Israeli Defense Minister prohibiting the entry of food, fuel, and electricity into the Gaza strip, Israel has systematically obstructed and limited access to vital aid for Palestinians and Gaza, even intentionally destroying existing cropland. On March 18th, the U.N. Secretary General declared that ‘this is the highest number of people facing catastrophic hunger ever recorded by the integrated food security classification system,'” they added.

Listen:

“To make bread, Gazans have been forced to use animal feed as flour,” the protesters continued. “To break their fasts in Ramadhan, Gazans have been forced to prepare meals of grass. Ninety-seven percent of Gaza’s water has been deemed undrinkable since Oct of 2021, and they’ve been forced to drink dirty saltwater to survive.”

“The consequences of this unprecedented famine created and maintained by Israeli will devastate Gaza’s children for generations to come and can’t be tolerated any longer. We’ve begun our hunger strike to stand in solidarity with the people of Gaza,” they said.

“We are drawing from the tradition of Palestinian political prisoners going on saltwater online hunger strikes in Israeli prisons since 1968. Our hunger strike is a response to the administration’s refusal to engage with our demands for dissociation and disinvestment from Israel. We refuse to be silenced by the university administrations’ intimidation and repression tactics. We struggle together in solidarity with the people of Palestine. We commit our bodies to their liberation,” they concluded.

The protesters then listed their precise demands, including their desire for the school to perform “a full academic and cultural boycott of Israel,” their desire for “complete amnesty” from all charges/discipline, and their desire for a reversal on all bans/evictions of students.

As seen below, these demands were met with jeers and mockery from Israel’s many supporters (*Language warning):

According to the Asbury Park Press, only a measly 14 students have joined the hunger strike. To be fair, the strike comes after 15 other protesters were arrested days earlier.

Vivek Saxena

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