At least 1,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails are on hunger strike in a growing protest movement that has captured the imagination of the Palestinian public. Daily demonstrations are taking place in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in solidarity with the hunger strikers.
The protest outside the West Bank's Ofer prison this past weekend is now familiar scene. For the past two weeks there have been daily rallies there, and across the West Bank. Some joke that holding the protests close to the prison makes it easy for Israeli authorities to arrest and detain them.
Israel's prime minister has formed a national unity government. Like all Israeli leaders, Benjamin Netanyahu leads a coalition government in parliament. He needs to put together multiple parties to have a majority. And by adding the centrist Kadima party to his side, Netanyahu increases his support and avoids the possibility of having to call an early election. NPR's. Lourdes Garcia-Navarro joins us on the line from Israel to tell us what it all means. Lourdes, hi.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a Likud party convention in Tel Aviv, May 6. Netanyahu said Monday that the next general elections would be held on Sept. 4, instead of the original schedule of October 2013.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu embraces Meir Dagan, the then-outgoing chief of the Mossad intelligence agency, in January 2011. Dagan is among former security chiefs who have recently criticized Netanyahu, saying he has exaggerated the urgency of the threat posed by Iran's nuclear program.