Israel to free five Palestinians


Israel approved the release of five Palestinian prisoners in the last stage of the exchange deal with Hezbollah.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s Cabinet on Sunday voted to free the prisoners in what would conclude the multi-stage, United Nations-brokered deal under which Israel on July 16 recovered the bodies of two army reservists held by the Lebanese militia.

The identities of those on the Palestinian amnesty roster were not immediately given, nor was a date for their release. According to Israeli media, they would not be terrorists imprisoned for carrying out lethal attacks.

Hezbollah, which secured the return of four captured guerrillas and a jailed Lebanese terrorist last month, had demanded that Israel release a large number of Palestinian prisoners.

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