Saturday, 3 August 2013

Erekat: Prisoners to be released in 4 stages

RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Long-serving Palestinian prisoners will be released in four stages by Israel, PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat said Saturday.

The first stage will see 26 prisoners released on August 13, the PLO official told Ma'an. Israel refused to release all detainees at the same time, he added.

The Palestinian leadership has informed Israel and the United States that all final status issues must be put on the negotiating table, including Jerusalem, refugees, water and settlements, Erekat said.

The prisoner release was approved by Israel's cabinet last week and will see 104 veteran Palestinian and Israeli-Palestinian prisoners freed.

Last week, the Palestinian Prisoners Society published a list of detainees expected to be freed as part of the deal. more

Gazans rally, call for end of Israeli occupation

Baku-APA. Thousands of Palestinians rallied in Gaza on Friday to mark the International March to Jerusalem and called for ending the Israeli occupation of the city which began in 1967, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

The International March to Jerusalem was proposed by Iran's then spiritual leader Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979 to take place on every last Friday of the fasting month of Ramadan each year.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement organized the rally in Gaza, in which demonstrators waved Palestinian flags and chanted slogans condemning the world's silence on the Israeli practices in the city.

The Palestinians want east Jerusalem to be the capital of their future Palestinian state, while Israel, which annexed the city in 1968, considers united Jerusalem as the eternal capital of the Jewish state.

Representatives of national and Islamic factions and political powers in the Gaza Strip, ruled by Islamic Hamas movement, joined the rally. more