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Palestinians Mark Prisoners’ Day Promising to Free Captives from Israeli Prisons | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Protesters attend a rally marking Palestinian Prisoners’ Day in Gaza City April 16, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)

Ramallah-Palestinians belonging to all sects, groups and political affiliations commemorated “Prisoners Day” with promises of clearing Israeli prisons from over seven thousand prisoners, among which are women and children, who have been long held captive .

Palestinian leadership announced its commitment on releasing captives as a part of any agreement, confirming that Hamas has leverage for a nearing prisoner’s exchange- in reference to corpses of Israeli soldiers and other Israeli captives.

One of the Fatah leaders, Mohammed al-A’loul said that the question on captive prisoners always lingers within the consciousness of our nation and people, and is not restricted nor defined by a single commemorative day.

“This occasion is merely to shed light on their cause, while we work throughout the other days on both freeing them and the land,” al-Al’oul said.

The Palestinian leadership made sure that the suit of prisoners is among the top priority cases for final resolve with Israel, which would lead to the end of conflict and signing of a peace agreement.

On several occasions, Palestinian authorities succeeded in freeing prisoners via negotiations and deals with Israel; however, Hamas does not agree with that approach believing that prisons should be cleared through obligatory exchange deals.

Head of the Hamas political office, Khaled Mashal, yesterday confirmed that his group saves no effort in trying to free prisoners, and insists for any new deal to be conditioned by first freeing the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange captives. The Shalit deal was struck between Hamas and Israel in 2011.