80 prisoners freed across the country to ease overcrowding

March 4, 2012 17:58


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The Israel Prisons Service (IPS) on Sunday released 80 prisoners from penitentiaries across the country as part of an ongoing campaign to reduced prison overcrowding.

The IPS said the prisoners included a small number of security prisoners, but none who were imprisoned for serious offenses. They also released two female prisoners, the IPS said.The move follows a mass release of 600 prisoners last Thursday, which the IPS said was meant to improve living conditions in Israel's prisons. The release included 220 Palestinians as well as former cabinet minister Shlomo Benizri.

Last week's release followed a Knesset Control Committee ruling which stipulates that prisoners serving up to four years or whose original sentences were reduced to four years or less can be subject to "administrative release" in order to relieve prison crowding.

The committee also lowered the maximum number of prisoners in Israeli prisons to 16,873 from its previous high of 17,700.

The IPS said Sunday they are still above 16,873 prisoners and that further releases are expected in the near future.

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