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Israeli prisons 'punish' Palestinians for Hebron youth disappearance

June 18, 2014 9:40 P.M. (Updated: June 20, 2014 11:00 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli Prison Services have begun "punishing" Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails in response to the disappearance of three Israeli teens in Hebron last week, Israeli media reported on Wednesday.

The punishments, which were said to have been ordered by Minister of Internal Security Yitzhak Aharonovich, highlight how wide-reaching the consequences of the disappearance -- which Israeli authorities blame on Hamas -- have been for all Palestinians.

Prison services confiscated TVs from the prisoners' cells, prevented them from acquiring newspapers and closed the canteen, according to Israeli news site Ynet.

The source added that the prison services are "studying" further punishments that do not contravene the law to implement, and said that the coming punishments will specialize in what he called the prisoners' "privileges." All punishments would be presented to the minister to approve.

Minister Aharonovich highlighted earlier that Palestinian prisoners, especially the prisoners of Hamas, will be strictly punished as retibution for the teenagers' disappearance.

Visits from the prisoners' families would also be prevented this week.

More than 5,000 Palestinians are currently being held in Israeli prisons, including around 200 being held indefinitely without charge or trial.
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