Palestinian families from Gaza have been allowed to visit their jailed relatives for the first time in five years under a deal that ended a prisoners' hunger strike.

Israel imposed sanctions on family visits from Gaza in 2007 after Palestinians abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and held him captive.

He was freed last October in exchange for 1,000 Palestinian prisoners.

A prisons service spokeswoman said the families of 24 prisoners visited the Ramon prison in Israel.

The visits were part of a new agreement reached earlier this year to end a month-long hunger strike by 1,600 Palestinian prisoners demanding better detention conditions.

The hunger strikers' demands included the resumption of family visits.

Other requests were the ending of Israel's policy of detaining some terrorism suspects without trial.

The prisoners ended their fast in May after Egypt mediated a deal by which Israel gave in to some demands.

The authorities did not promise to end its "administrative detention" without trial, citing security concerns and the need to protect secret informants.

Visits from Gaza relatives are expected to be held on a weekly basis.