RAMALLAH, Palestine 

Israeli prison authorities closed completely the Ramon prison in northern Israel following the detection of several coronavirus infections, according to a Palestinian NGO on Sunday.

In a statement, the Palestinian Prisoner Society said the closure was “a serious indication of a possible wide outbreak of the pandemic among the detainees”.

The NGO said prison authorities will conduct coronavirus tests on prisoners, but without specifying whether Palestinian prisoners tested positive for the virus.

There was no comment from Israeli authorities on the claim.

On Saturday, Israel’s Public Security Minister Amir Ohana said that providing prisoners with coronavirus vaccines was not a “priority”.

Since April, around 140 Palestinian detainees were infected with COVID-19. 

Israel is holding around 4,400 Palestinians, including 41 women, 170 children and 380 detainees imprisoned with no charges or trials under the Israeli administrative detention policy.

Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara

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