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From VOA:

This prompted some activists to fast for days or even weeks to get lawmakers to pay attention.

What's the meaning of the word "fast"? It seems to be used as a verb. According to the dictionary, the word "fast" indeed can be used as a verb:

to eat little or no food for a period of time, especially for religious reasons

But it seems that the definition has nothing to do with the quotation above. Can anyone tell me how to interpret the word "fast"? Thanks.

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You found the right meaning. Public fasting - we often call it a hunger strike - is a common device for calling attention to a political or social cause.

Among famous hunger strikers were the Suffragettes, who in the 2oth century struggled to get women the vote in the United Kingdom and the United States, and Mahatma Gandhi, in his campaign for Indian independence.

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