Iraqi detainees being held in Youngstown, Ohio taking part in hunger strike

  • Written by:

Jim Kiertzner
(WXYZ) – A hunger strike is underway inside a correctional facility in Youngstown, Ohio where more than 100 detainees are being held since arrested in sweeps this summer in Metro Detroit.
An attorney with Code Legal Aid, which is representing the Chaldean and Iraqis in federal litigation says the number participating in the hunger strike could be as many as 40.

Some reports say they’ve not eaten for 3 days and that the facility was on lockdown for 23 hours to deal with health and other ramifications.

Forty-five-year-old Muzahem Alsayaf was arrested by federal agents in June at his home in Dearborn Heights.

His wife Madonna tells 7 Action News that he was participating in the hunger strike because they’d rather die here in the U. S. that be deported and face an ugly certain death in Iraq.

She says her husband was moved today from Ohio to the Calhoun County Jail in Battle Creek.

The hunger strikes are happening now because detainees are given a review after 90 days and could be released to their families here in Metro Detroit. But they are being told they will continue to be held until a court decides their fate.