By
MSNBC TV
updated 7/16/2013 5:18:22 PM ET 2013-07-16T21:18:22

A quarter of hunger-striking prisoners at Guantanamo Bay have abandoned their protest, while the number of those being force-fed has increased.

A quarter of hunger-striking prisoners at Guantanamo Bay have abandoned their protest. Since the Muslim holy month of Ramadan began on July 8, 26 of 106 hunger-strikers have been removed from the military’s count of those abstaining from food. Tuesday marked the first time since July 2 that the number of people receiving force-feeding–which entails being strapped down while a liquid nutritional supplement is fed through a nasogastric tube for as long as two hours up to twice a day–has increased46 prisoners are now being force fed.

The decrease in hunger-strikers may be due to a recently instituted  policy: hunger-striking prisoners can leave maximum security lock down–which many were moved to do during an April 13 clash with guards–and return to a communal section of the prison where they can participate in group meals and prayer if they agree not to end their hunger strike, according to prison spokesmen.

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