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Palestinian prisoners in Israel call off planned hunger strike

By AFP - Sep 16,2021 - Last updated at Sep 16,2021

People gather with signs for a demonstration in support of Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons, outside the ICRC offices in Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, on Tuesday (AFP photo)

RAMALLAH — Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails have called off a planned hunger strike later this week involving some 1,400 inmates after their demands were met, a Palestinian group said Wednesday.

Tensions have been running high since six militants staged a dramatic escape from a high-security jail in northern Israel on September 6, via a tunnel dug under a sink. Four of them have since been recaptured.

Hundreds of their fellow inmates were transferred to other jails, and personal items were confiscated, according to the Palestinian Prisoners' Club.

The Palestinian Authority's commission for prisoners had announced plans for a hunger strike from Friday.

Some 1,380 prisoners — out of more than 4,000 Palestinians held in Israeli jails — were to start fasting on Friday, to be joined by other inmates next week.

On Wednesday, however, the Prisoners' Club said it had been decided to "suspend the collective hunger strike after the demands were met" including a "cessation of the collective punishments".

An Israel Prison Service spokesman said that as of Wednesday there was no indication that a hunger strike was set to begin, but refused to comment on the claim that prisoners' demands had been met.

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