Israel released the names of 26 Palestinian prisoners about to be released this week on Monday. It will do so in the context of renewed Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. After a preparatory meeting in Washington two weeks ago, talks are to continue for another round on Wednesday in Jerusalem and Jericho.
The Israeli government has approved the release of a total of 104 long-term Palestinians in late July. According to a convention negotiated with US Secretary of State John Kerry, they are to be released in four groups within a few months. Each phase of the redundancies should be linked to progress in the negotiations.
List of Prisoners to be released
The Israeli prison administration published a list of 26 first-class Palestinian prisoners on the Internet today. It thus fulfilled the condition of at least 48 hours in advance that the families of the victims of these prisoners could appeal to the Supreme Court. However, according to the Reuters agency, it intervenes in these cases only exceptionally.
They spent two decades in prison, most of whom were convicted of murder
Palestinians in the first group were convicted in 21 cases of murderous attacks against Israelis or Palestinians suspected of alleged collaboration with Israel, the remaining five were sentenced to aid in murder or abduction. According to the AP, most of them served about 20 years. With the exception of one person arrested in 2001, according to AFP, all others were arrested before 1994, the “oldest” of them in 1985.
Half of the prisoners on the list do not have any dates for the originally planned sentence, which means that they have been sentenced to life imprisonment. For others, without the current special agreement, the sentence should end in a few years.
Of the 26 prisoners in the first group released in the coming days, 14 will be deported to the Gaza Strip and 12 will be transported by Israel to the West Bank, a statement made by the Israeli government.
Murderers or heroes?
Most Palestinians view these prisoners as heroes. Regardless of the crimes they have committed, he sees them as compatriots who have made a personal sacrifice in the struggle for independence.
Many Israelis, on the other hand, label those Palestinians who have the blood of civilians on their hands as terrorists.
The Israeli government does not agree on the release of the prisoners
Extreme right-wing members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet also protested against the release of Palestina prisoners.
On Sunday, just three days before the peace talks continued, Ariel definitively approved the construction of a thousand more houses in the occupied Palestinian territories. “No country is waiting for orders from abroad, where it is allowed to build and where not,” he said.
Both Karim and Mahir Junis are the longest-imprisoned Palestinians in Israeli penalties. Now, after 30 years behind bars, they are likely to be released in exchange for the resumption of Middle East peace talks. However, 26 Palestinian prisoners are not on the list of the first group.