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Arnon Perlman: On Palestinian Prisoners Release

Arnon Perlman's Statement to the Press about the release of the Palestinian Prisoners.

Good Afternoon,

Following the Government Resolution regarding the criteria for the release of Palestinian prisoners, which was agreed upon in two Cabinet meetings on July 6th and 27th, and after the Ministerial Committee, headed by the Prime Minister, discussed and approved the release during the meeting which took place on August 3rd, today Israel released 334 Palestinian prisoners from various prisons around the country.

The prisoners, released today from Ktziot, Megido and Ofer Prisons, signed a form, prior to their release, in which they declared their commitment not to engage in terror, violence or incitement in the future. Once they were ready, the prisoners were driven to several transit points and were there released, in coordination with the Palestinian authorities in the field, and were subsequently transferred to the authorized Palestinian representatives.

It is important to point out that the prisoner release is a unilateral step which is not a part of the Roadmap. Israel took this step as a trust-building measure, and out of a sense of commitment to promoting the process which began with the Palestinians. At the same time, it is important to remember that the Palestinians have yet to begin carrying out the commitments laid out in the Roadmap and at the Aqaba Summit, and there is no Palestinian activity against terrorist infrastructure. Israel expects the Authority to begin fulfilling the commitments it took upon itself to enable the process to advance.

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