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Palestinian political prisoners under Israeli detention will start a set of measures, including a hunger strike, this upcoming week in protest of the ongoing Israeli regime’s repressive measures, prisoners’ advocacy groups say.
Palestine's official WAFA news agency reported that the Palestinian Authority’s Detainees Affairs Commission and the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) announced Saturday prisoners will boycott the Israel Prison Service (IPS) and start a gradual hunger strike while more inmates are expected to join the strike every day.
After six Palestinians managed to escape from Israel’s highly-fortified Gilboa prison on Monday, Israel implemented a repressive campaign against more than 4,500 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails. Four of the six prisoners have been caught while the remaining two are still at large.
Israel adopted collective punitive measures against Palestinian prisoners after the recent escape of the six inmates.
The punitive measures include moving dozens of detainees to solitary confinements, preventing inmates from going to the prison yard, banning prisoners from meeting their families, and closing the canteens.
Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank also arrested relatives of the six Palestinians that recently managed to escape from its highly-fortified Gilboa prison.
Tel Aviv also decided to relocate inmates in Gilboa following the jailbreak, as Palestinian resistance factions havingdeclared Friday a day of rage to protest the Israeli decision.
In response to the Israeli crackdown and subsequent IPS measures, prisoners set fire to detention cells inside the Israeli Ofer and Kzi'ot prisons last week.
Citing the International Committee of the Red Cross, the PPS stated Thursday that the IPS banned Palestinian families from visiting their relatives in jail until the end of this month.
In a statement, the resistance movement Islamic Jihad said it holds Tel Aviv fully responsible for the lives of Yaqoub Qadri, 48, and 45-year-old Mahmoud Abdullah Ardah, who were said to have been re-arrested in the city of Nazareth.
Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian groups have warned Israel against putting in danger the lives of prisoners detained after their escape earlier in the week.
Islamic Jihad warned that any harm to their lives would amount to a declaration of war against Palestinians, and trigger a series of swift retaliatory measures against the Tel Aviv government.
More than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners are currently held in some 17 Israeli jails, and dozens of them serve multiple life sentences. Israeli forces have also arrested more than 17,000 minors since 2000.