Canadians detained in Egypt end hunger strike

Two Canadian men detained in Egypt since their Aug. 16 arrest in Cairo have ended their hunger strike after two weeks, according to one of their close friends.

Dr. Tarek Loubani of London, Ont., and John Greyson of Toronto arrested in Cairo on Aug. 16.

Canadians Tarek Loubani, left, and John Greyson have been detained without formal charges in Egypt since Aug. 16. (CBC)

Two Canadian men detained in Egypt have ended their hunger strike after two weeks, according to one of their close friends.

Dr. Tarek Loubani of London, Ont., and John Greyson of Toronto were arrested in Cairo on Aug. 16. They have yet to face formal charges.

Detained in Cairo's Tora prison, they began their hunger strike on Sept. 16.

Justin Podur, who has been tracking their status, posted a statement on a website Wednesday stating that Loubani and Greyson had ended their strike.

"They have resumed eating solid food under medical supervision. They saw a doctor, as well as staff from the Canadian Embassy, today."

Podur said the two men started their hunger strike to draw attention to their detention and, secondarily, to win more exercise time in prison. Podur said that second demand was won.

On Sept. 30 it was learned that Greyson and Loubani, along with other people arrested on Aug. 16, had their detention period extended by another 45 days.

"Facing another 45 days, and having won their secondary demand, Tarek and John ended their hunger strike," Podur said in his statement.

He added: "While we are relieved, we do not believe that freeing them has become less urgent. We are not willing to wait for day 90 and are not interested in the ridiculous claims made by the Egyptian authorities about the reasons for their continuing detention."

Podur also urged the Canadian government to continue to push for the unconditional release of Greyson and Loubani.

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