Israel: No talks with Palestinian inmates on hunger strike
Israel will not negotiate with hundreds of Palestinian prisoners who launched a hunger strike to press for better conditions, a government minister said on Tuesday, adding that the organiser of the protest has been placed in solitary confinement.
If sustained, the strike led by Marwan Barghouti, a Palestinian leader jailed during the second Palestinian uprising, would be the largest in recent years. It could heighten Israeli-Palestinian tensions at a time of renewed US attempts to restart stalled peace negotiations.
Israeli rule over the West Bank and east Jerusalem, territories captured during the 1967 war and claimed by the Palestinians as part of a future state, reaches the half- century mark in June.
The Palestinian prisoners seek better conditions, including more contact with relatives, and an end to Israel's practice of detentions without trials.
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