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Palestinians rally in occupied West Bank in support of detainees

Palestinians hold portraits of relatives jailed in Israeli prisons as they protest to demand their release during a demonstration to mark the Prisoners' Day in the northern West Bank city of Nablus on April 17, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

Hundreds of Palestinians have staged a rally in the central part of the occupied West Bank to express solidarity with detainees, who are languishing in Israeli prisons and detention centers.

The protesters took to the streets in the city of al-Bireh, located 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) north of Jerusalem al-Quds, on Tuesday, holding up pictures of their imprisoned loved ones and carrying banners calling for an end to Israeli violations against Palestinian inmates.

“Our message today is to show support for the detainees’ struggle against Israeli crimes,” Qadoura Fares, head of the Palestinian Prisoners Club, said.  

He warned that conditions of Palestinian prisoners were going “from bad to worse” in Israeli prisons.  

This file picture shows Palestinian prisoners in the yard of Israel's Megiddo prison. (Photo by AFP)

More than 7,000 Palestinians are reportedly held at Israeli jails. Hundreds of the inmates have apparently been incarcerated under the practice of administrative detention, a policy under which Palestinian inmates are kept in Israeli detention facilities without trial or charge.

Some Palestinian prisoners have been held in administrative detention for up to eleven years.

Palestinian inmates regularly stage hunger strikes in protest at the administrative detention policy and their harsh prison conditions in Israeli jails.

According to reports, at least 13 Palestinian lawmakers are currently imprisoned in Israeli detention facilities. Nine of them are being held without trial under administrative detention.

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