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Kurdish prisoners in Turkey end hunger strike

Some 700 Kurdish prisoners across Turkey on Sunday ended a 68-day hunger strike after an appeal by Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan, the pro-Kurdish news agency Firatnews reported.

Ocalan, who himself has been in solitary confinement in a prison near Istanbul for about a year and half, called Saturday for an end to the hunger strike by his supporters.

His brother Mehmet publicised the call in a statement after meeting the jailed leader in prison the same day.

"This action has achieved its goal. I want them to stop their action immediately and without any hesitation," Ocalan said, according to the statement.

Turkey's Islamic-rooted government on Tuesday submitted a bill to parliament to give Kurds the right to use their own language in court, a key demand of the prisoners.

Ankara's move was initially deemed "inadequate" by defenders of the Kurdish cause, who are also calling for improved detention conditions for Ocalan.

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