IPS lets 2 out of solitary, expects end to strike

Official also says he expects ongoing negotiations will lead to end to hunger strike in 7-10 days.

Palestinian prisoners in Israel's Ketziot prison 311 (R) (photo credit: Ronen Zvulun/Reuters)
Palestinian prisoners in Israel's Ketziot prison 311 (R)
(photo credit: Ronen Zvulun/Reuters)
The Israel Prisons Service on Thursday agreed to permit two prisoners to leave solitary confinement and be returned to the general prisoner population, Israel Radio reported.
The new decision takes place against the backdrop of an almost month-old prisoner hunger strike by approximately 1600 Palestinian prisoners protesting against certain conditions in Israeli jails.
Prisoner representatives have been requesting, among other things, the cancelling of the solitary confinement of seven prisoners, said the report.
Following the IPS's first move cancelling a decision to place a prisoner in solitary confinement, the prisoners made an additional push for their full request to be granted.
The IPS refused, responding that it will review all prisoner requests to leave solitary confinement on a case by case basis.
According to the report, a senior official familiar with the talks, said that ending solitary confinement is one of the prisoners' primary demands. 
The official also reportedly said that he expects that ongoing negotiations will lead to an end to the hunger strike in about 7-10 days.
Separately, the IPS recently announced that it will be improving a number of prisoner conditions, including allowing some requests for visits by families from Gaza, permitting the pension amount from the Palestinian Authority for prisoners to be increased by a third to NIS 400 per month, as well as allowing prisoners to watch TV channels in Arabic.