Gazans call on Saudi Arabia to free imprisoned relatives

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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Several families of Palestinian detainees imprisoned by Saudi Arabia are holding a rare protest in Gaza and are calling on Riyadh to free them.

The families gathered Wednesday outside the International Committee of the Red Cross office in Gaza City, holding banners against the detention and calling for an end to their "torture" in Saudi prisons.

Most of the nearly 50 detainees are believed to be affiliated with Hamas, the Islamic militant group that controls Gaza.

Hamas says Saudi authorities intensified a crackdown on the Islamist group's supporters in the kingdom this year. It apparently came as Hamas announced it has fully restored ties with Iran, Riyadh's archrival in the region.

Hamas says Saudi Arabia arrested the Palestinians for collecting donations for Palestinian charities, not on security charges.

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