On Monday six high-risk security prisoners escaped from Gilboa Prison in northern Israel.
The six prisoners broke out of the high-security Israeli prison. Four of the men were serving life sentences.
Palestinian factions have hailed the escape.
Fawzi Barhoum, spokesperson for Hamas said: ‘This great victory proves again that the will and determination of our brave soldiers inside the prisons of the enemy cannot be defeated.’
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s office referred to the escape as a ‘grave incident that requires an across-the-board effort by the security forces’ to find the escapees.
Three of the prisoners have previously been found to present a high flight risk. They have previously carried out attacks against Israel. One of the escapees is Zakaria Zubeidi, the former leader of Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade. Zubeidi is said to be responsible for a 2002 attack at a Likud party office which killed six people.
The Israeli army said its forces were ‘prepared and deployed’ in the West Bank as part of the operation to find the six men.
The escapees escaped through a hole from their cell toilet floor. From there they accessed passages that were formed during the prison’s construction.
According to the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) all 400 inmates detained at Gilboa prison over ‘security offences’ are being relocated in case additional tunnels have been dug beneath the prison.
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