Sleepwalking into the past? Liam Hannaway’s hunger strike.

With the ongoing protests against conditions in Maghaberry, a dead hunger striker is not in anyone’s interests but that seems a growing risk in the much overlooked case of Liam Hannaway. Hannaway is two years into a 10-year sentence for possession of explosives and ammunition and is on Hunger Strike. His situation seems complex and I have no personal insight but the Andersonstown News initially reported on it while the IFC have a more recent article:

Liam was sentenced ten years in 2008 for possession of explosives. While still on remand at Maghaberry prison, Liam was approached by prison staff and told that an alleged death threat had been put on his life by unnamed republicans. These alleged `threats’ have never been substantiated. An extensive inquiry by his well-known republican family has determined without any doubt there is no threat to his life from the movement on the outside. The republican prisoners at Roe house have said they will welcome Liam “with open arms”.

However, he is now approaching his 40th day without food and reaching a point when his death becomes increasingly likely. Surely that alone warrants real attention to define his grievance and see if it can be resolved before a prison death and the sparks we know such events can generate?

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