Palestinians have called for a worldwide boycott of the American food franchise, Pizza Hut, after its Israel branch ran an insulting advertisement that mocked Marwan Barghouti, the leader of a weeks-long mass Palestinian hunger strike.
The senior jailed figure of the Palestinian Fatah movement started the protest action on April 17 and was joined by some 2,000 fellow inmates. The mass strike, dubbed the Freedom and Dignity Strike, seeks to force Israeli authorities into improving the prison and confinement conditions.
Earlier this week, Pizza Hut issued a Facebook post, using a frame grab from a video prepared by Israel’s prisons authority a day earlier, which purportedly showed Barghouti taking food in his cell.
The picture was superimposed by a text reading, “Barghouti, if you’re going to break a strike, why not pizza?” It was also adapted with an image of a pizza box popping out from underneath the bunk bed, and a pizza slice placed in the wash basin.
The insulting post infuriated Palestinians, who took to social media to blast Pizza Hut over the advertisement. Some have redesigned the restaurant’s logo so it features prison bars and barbed wire.
“Pizza Hut is ridiculing the prisoners’ strike,” activist Alaa Abu Diab wrote on Facebook, using the hashtag #boycott_pizzahut.