Mansri Hichem Ends Hunger Strike - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Mansri Hichem Ends Hunger Strike

Published May 20, 2009

An Algerian asylum seeker protesting the two-year wait he’s endured to
have his application taken up has ended his hunger strike after 25 days.
Atli Viðar Thorstensen, a project director for Red Cross Iceland, told Morgunblaðið, “He’s saving his strength. He’s a bit malnourished but otherwise feels fine.”
As we previously reported, Mansri Hichem, who had been living at Gistiheimili Fit in Njarðvík along with many other asylum seekers, has been waiting nearly two years for his application for asylum to be taken up by the Ministry of Justice.
Minister of Justice Ragna Árnadóttir told reporters that the ministry
“will not be pressured by hunger strikes or other forms of protest”. She added that for the ministry to bend to the pressure would upset the
balance of equal treatment that all applicants for asylum as supposed
to receive, and that he has to understand that the system doesn’t work
this way. Hichem’s case is, she continued, a top priority at the
ministry.

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