Last updated: 17 April, 2012

Bahraini hunger striker to refuse intravenous fluids and drink only water

Jailed Bahraini Shiite activist Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, who is on a hunger strike, will refuse intravenous infusions from Wednesday and drink only water, his wife said.

“Abdulhadi called and said he will refuse from dawn on Wednesday intravenous infusions and other liquids, except water,” Khadija al-Moussawi told AFP.

“His voice was weak,” she added, indicating that she saw her husband on Sunday, when “I was able to visit him for an hour.”

Khawaja, who also holds Danish nationality, has been on a hunger strike since the night of February 8-9 to demand his release from prison, where he is serving a life sentence.

He was sentenced with other opposition figures on charges of conspiring to overthrow the ruling Sunni monarchy of Bahrain during last year’s protests in the Shiite majority state.

Meanwhile, Catherine Ashton, the chief diplomat for the European Union, on Tuesday called for his release.

Ashton said Khawaja’s health is “seriously deteriorating and his life is at risk.”

“The EU urges in the strongest possible terms the Bahraini authorities to find a compassionate, pragmatic and humanitarian solution … as a matter of the utmost urgency,” she said.

Bahrain has refused Denmark’s offer to take him in.