Israel’s Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan has announced plans to worsen conditions for Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, including rationing water supplies and reducing the number of family visits.

The planned moves, which are expected to come into force in the coming weeks after being approved by the Israeli cabinet, were sharply criticised by Palestinian leaders and activists who described as them as another escalation of human rights violations by Israel.

Speaking to reporters Mr Erdan said the plan will also see jails removing cooking rights and limiting prisoners’ access to television as well as blocking funds to the Palestinian authority.

The minister said family visits had already been halted for prisoners affiliated with the Palestinian movement Hamas.

Rights groups say more than 1 800 are in need of medical care, with about 700 suffering from serious or chronic illnesses.

Many Palestinian prisoners say they have been subject to torture and violence while in custody.

There have been many protests against poor conditions in recent years, including several hunger strikes.