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Indian woman who went on 14-year hunger strike freed from custody

Published on Aug 20, 2014 9:20 PM
Irom Chanu Sharmila, also known as the 'Iron Lady of Manipur', (center), leaves after an appearance at the Patiala House Court in New Delhi on May 28, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

NEW DELHI (AFP) - An Indian woman who has staged a 14-year hunger strike against rights abuses in the country’s northeast broke down in tears on Wednesday as she was finally released from a hospital jail.

Irom Sharmila, known as the Iron Lady of Manipur for her unwavering and non-violent protest, said she was “happy” after spending years in custody, but vowed to continue her fast in protest at the military’s alleged abuses.

Sharmila, looking frail and with her voice faltering, said she wanted “mass support” for her protest, as she emerged from a hospital in Imphal, the capital of Manipur state.

“I will continue with my hunger strike no matter what comes,” she told reporters gathered outside.

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