Eight more Afghan asylum-seekers have joined a hunger strike by 33 of their countrymen that began at St Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin yesterday.
The original 33, who include a diabetic blind man, entered the cathedral at around midday yesterday, saying they would refuse food and water until they were allowed to stay in Ireland.
They were joined by eight more Afghans this morning, bringing the total number involved in the protest to 41.
The men say they are at risk of torture and death in Afghanistan and their action was prompted by the rejection of some of their asylum applications.
They are aged between 16 and 45 and have all been living in different parts of Ireland for between one and five years.
They claim their cases have not been given full attention by the Irish authorities.