News from Lori's Parents

25 January 2000

This is day 1,518 of wrongful incarceration.

In this update:

Lori ends hunger strike after 14 days

We have just learned and are very much relieved that Lori has ended the hunger strike she began on January 11th, the day that marked the fourth anniversary of her unjust conviction and sentence to life in a Peruvian prison. Like hundreds of other inmates in Peruvian prisons Lori is innocent and their wrongful imprisonment is something that is uppermost in her daily thoughts. In the written statement she gave to the prison director that was forwarded to us by the U.S. Embassy, Lori said: "in the face of injustice, silence is an accomplice."

She told Rhoda a few days before that if she were to begin a hunger protest it would last only until she believed her point had been made to prison officials and the governments of Peru and the United States. In her statement she confirms her commitment to human rights and outlines the violations of fundamental rights in a Peruvian penal system whose purpose is the physical, moral, and psychological destruction of its prisoners.

Lori Berenson commenced this hunger strike for principle, not publicity. She was determined to demonstrate to both the Peruvian and U.S. governments her strong moral opposition to policies that destroy human dignity and are unacceptable to a civilized society.

Despite knowing that her own health is already impaired after having spent these past four years under extremely harsh and debilitating conditions, Lori commenced her courageous personal protest to show her unwavering commitment to ending injustice and suffering.

These were particularly trying days. Many thanks for all your support.

- Rhoda and Mark Berenson