Israelis demand Red Cross visit Shalit

Aug. 25, 2009 at 7:49 AM
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JERUSALEM, Aug. 25 (UPI) -- The Israel Prison Service said it suspended visits by the relatives of Hamas inmates at two prisons following threats by protesters.

Hundreds of Israeli members of the Army of Shalit's Friends campaigning for the release of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit protested Tuesday outside three Israeli prisons, Israeli media reports said.

The protesters demanded the government suspend all visits to Hamas inmates until Shalit's captors permit representatives of the International Red Cross to visit the soldier, Maariv said.

The IPS Monday announced it would halt all visits to the Hadarim and Shikma prisons for one day to prevent disturbances. Visits continued at Megiddo Prison, the paper said.

Shalit's father Noam met with campaigners outside Megiddo Tuesday and said it was unacceptable his son is refused visits while Palestinian inmates are able to see their families, the paper said.

The Palestinian Maan news agency accused Israel of violating the Geneva Convention for suspending family visits to the two prisons.

Shalit was on operational duty near the Gaza border when he was abducted in June 2006 and taken to Gaza where he has been held incommunicado ever since.

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