With the pending breakdown of U.S.-brokered peace negotiations and increasing PA belligerence, Israel has cancelled the agreement to release terrorists as scheduled on Saturday.
Israel has cancelled the scheduled release of 26 terrorists from prison on Saturday night.
“The Israeli government has informed us through the American mediator that it will not abide with its commitment to release the fourth batch of Palestinian prisoners scheduled for tomorrow,” senior PA official Jibril Rajoub told AFP news service on Friday.
“Israel has refused to commit to the names that were agreed upon of prisoners held by Israel since before the 1993 Oslo agreements,” he said.
A committee or five ministers, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, was to decide which prisoners should be freed. Their names would have had to be made public at least 48 hours prior to the release, not including the Jewish Sabbath, in order to provide time for appeals to the High Court of Justice.
The originally scheduled release would have been the fourth and final stage in the freeing of 104 terrorists as a gesture to encourage peace negotiations.
Over the past several months, thousands of families of victims have been protesting the deal to release terrorists, many of whom have resumed violence against civilians following their release.
PA Central Committee Member Tawfiq Tirawi, as documented by Palestinian Media Watch, stated this week on official PA TV that the negotiations are merely “one of the methods of struggle. But the rifle is here, and it can burst forth at any moment.”
With the lack of progress made in the negotiations or any meaningful concessions on the Palestinian side. a growing number of Israeli government ministers have joined the call to cancel Saturday’s prisoner release. Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon has threatened to resign if the terrorists are set free.
Abbas, while adamant in his refusal to recognize the Jewish state – with the support of the Arab League – has been demanding a construction freeze in Judea and Samaria and the freeing of terrorists as a precondition for merely continuing the talks.
The PA head has been receiving the released prisoners with blood on their hands as heroes.
Author: Atara Beck, staff writer, United with Israel
Date: Mar. 28, 2014