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550 Palestinian Detainees Released in Second Phase of Israel-Hamas Swap Deal

550 Palestinian detainees freed on Sunday evening

[ 18/12/2011 - 11:26 PM ]


The Israeli occupation authorities freed on Sunday evening 550 Palestinian detainees in fulfilment of the prisoner exchange deal between Hamas and the Israeli occupation through which a total of 1050 Palestinian captives were liberated in exchange of Israeli occupation soldier Gilad Shalit.

Of the 550 liberated captives, 41 are from the Gaza Strip, 2 from Jordan and 507 from the West Bank and included six female captives.

The Gaza liberated captives arrived through the Karm Abu Salem crossing to an official and popular welcome. Deputy speaker of the PLC, Ahmad Bahar, as well as other lawmakers, government officials and factions leaders were in reception of the liberated captvies.

The West Bank captives were also received by representatives of all factions, lawmakers and thousands of family members who waited all day for their arrival.

The Israeli occupation delayed the release of the captives a few hours to spoil the joy of the families of the liberated captives.

Under 2nd Phase of Swap Deal, Israeli releases 550 Detainees

Monday December 19, 2011 01:17 by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies

The Israeli occupation apartheid government released on Sunday 550 detainees, including two from Jordan and six Palestinian female detainees, as part of the second and final phase of the prisoner swap deal that secured the release on Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

The second phase also included the release of two Jordanian detainees, and six Palestinian female detainees. The two Jordanian female detainees were sent to Amman via the Al Karama Bridge.

On October 18, Israel released 477 detainees, named by the resistance, while the captured Israel soldier, Gilad Shalit, was handed by the resistance to Egypt, before he was escorted by Israeli officials back home.

Palestinian sources reported, Sunday, that 41 detainees arrived into the Gaza Strip via the Rafah Border Terminal. The detainees were moved from Ayalon Prison in Al Ramla to Karem Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) Crossing, in cooperation with the International Red cross, before they were sent to Gaza via the Rafah Border Terminal between the Gaza Strip and Egypt.

507 detainees, who were all sent to Ofer Israeli prison, were released Sunday, and were sent the Palestinian Presidential Headquarters in Ramallah, via Rafat roadblock where the President’s secretary, Tayyib Abdul-Rahim, several political leaders of different factions, members and of the Palestinian Legislative Council and thousands of residents, gathered to great them.

Abdul-Rahim told the residents that the issue of the detainees in a top priority for President Abbas and his government, and that, similar to phase one, Abbas wanted to welcome the detainees himself, but had to leave the country to due to international obligations.

He added that the Palestinian leadership wants to see every Palestinian detainees freed, with the main focus of the old detainees, detainees sentenced to high terms, all women and children.

Abdul-Rahim added that the leadership is committed to implementing the Palestinian Unity Agreement, and thanked Egypt for all of its efforts.

Head of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Dr. Aziz Dweik of Hamas, saluted the detainees and stated that every Palestinian detainee must be released.

In Gaza, Dweik’s Deputy, Dr. Ahmad Bahar of Hamas, said that Israel must release all detainees, with no exceptions, adding that should Israel refrain from doing so, “it will be forced to release them, similar this deal”, referring to the resistance abducting Israeli soldiers to secure the release of Palestinian political prisoners.
Bahar thanked the Al Qassam Brigades of Hamas for “forcing Israel to implement the demands of the resistance”.

He further stated that representatives of Hamas and Fateh are holding meetings in Cairo to secure the final details of the implementation of the unity agreement in order to ensure a united Palestinian government, and a stance that maintains national interests, the Right of Return of all refugees, and Jerusalem the capital of the independent Palestinian State.

In related news, 30 Palestinians, including women and children, were wounded during clashes that took place with the soldiers fired gas bombs and rubber-coated metal bullets at families of the detainees who gathered near the Ofen Prison.

Abu Obaida: “Resistance Liberated 20% Of The Detainees”

Monday December 19, 2011 01:43 by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies

Abu Obaida, spokesperson of the Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Hamas movement, stated that the Palestinian resistance managed to liberate 20% of the detainees imprisoned by Israel, and will remain committed to securing the release of all detainees.

His statements came Sunday after Israel released 550 detainees during the second and final phase of the prisoner-swap deal that secured the release of Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit, in return for the release of more than 1000 detainees.

The first phase was implemented on October 18 when the resistance sent Shalit to Egypt and Israel released 477 Palestinian detainees.

“This swap-deal will not be the last, we will always act in order to secure the release of all detainees”, Abu Obaida said, “We promised, we fulfilled our promise; we will always fulfill our promises, the release of the detainees is our top priority, and the resistance will always work to achieve this goal”.

Abu Obaida further stated that the swap-deal came as an outcome of ongoing political, security and armed struggle, due to the relentless efforts of the armed groups, adding that the Al Qassam Brigades was in direct communication with Egypt to ensure that Israel fulfills all of its obligations under the Egyptian-mediated swap-deal.

He also stated that the deal states that Israel must release all female prisoners, yet, Israel did not release some of them under the claim that they live in the 1948 territories.

“This is unacceptable to us, we will continue the talks with Egypt to resolve this issue, and we hold Israel fully responsible for anything that could happen if it does not release them”.

Abu Obaida thanked the resistance, and saluted the fighters who were killed while resisting the occupation and during the attack that led to capturing Shalit in 2006.

The Al-Qassam leader said that “armed resistance groups will always defend their people, will always act for the liberation of Palestine, and the release of all detainees”.

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