October 3rd 1981, The Hunger Strike Ends In Long Kesh
October 3rd 1981, Hunger Strike Ends In Long Kesh.
The hunger strike had started on March 1st 1981 after years of a blanket protest and the failure of the British Government to implement the agreement which ended the hunger strike of 1980.
Republican prisoners had five demands:
1.The right not to wear a prison uniform.
2.The right not to do prison work.
3.The right of free association with other prisoners, and to organise educational and recreational pursuits.
4.The right to one visit, one letter and one parcel per week.
5.Full restoration of remission lost through the protest.
By the end of July, families of some of the hunger strikers began to intervene and take their loved ones off the hunger strike, by September it was clear the families would intervene in all of the remaining hunger strikers as no deal looked possible and ten hunger strikers had already died.
At 3:15 pm, on October 3rd 1981 the Hunger Strike was called off, over the coming months the British Government granted all the demands except the right not to do prison work.
After the great escape of 1983 the prison workshops were closed so this now meant all the five demands had been granted without the British publicly acknowledging they had given political status.
Ten Irish Republicans died in Long Kesh in 1981, fighting for political status, they were:
Bobby Sands MP
Kieran Doherty TD