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French Action Brings End to U.S. Hunger Strike

January 14, 1988

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Twenty-three Iranian refugees were ending a hunger strike in its 30th day today after the French government announced it would allow seven members of the Iranian resistance to return from Gabon.

The Washington group had said they were taking only tea and sugar cubes and living in motorhomes across the street from the French Embassy compound.

Some had vowed they would starve to death unless the French allowed deported members of the Mujahedeen resistance to return to France. They accused the French of making an ″ugly deal″ with the Iranian regime.

″This is a day of celebration,″ said a Mujahedeen spokesman in Washington, Amir Bolourchi, after the French government announcement.

He said a 24th hunger striker, Mahbobeh Safif, was taken to a hospital Wednesday after she collapsed.

Bolourchi said the strikers would formally end their strike when the Iranian refugees arrived in France later today. But he said the protest had succeeded and would end.

″Reaching this accord and the return of the supporters is a very great victory for the Iranian resistance movement in the international arena and indicative of the discredited nature of the regime″ in Tehran, he said.

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