Rome

Pannella 'in danger' after week-long hunger-thirst strike

Veteran Radical politician protesting at jail overcrowding

Pannella 'in danger' after week-long hunger-thirst strike

Rome, December 17 - There are concerns that the life of Marco Pannella, the historic leader of Italy's Radical Party, is in danger as he continues a week-long thirst-and-hunger strike over conditions in the nation's prisons. Doctors at the Rome hospital where the 82-year-old is staying said Sunday that he was in danger of suffering kidney failure and cardiovascular complications. Melania Rizzoli, a centre-right MP who went to see him on Monday, said she had not been allowed to because doctors feared the emotion of the visit could be "fatal". Pannella is calling for an amnesty to stop chronic overcrowding in Italy's jails and for prisoners to have the right to vote. He has staged a number of thirst-and-hunger strikes in the past to protest about a variety of issues.

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