High Court to Hear Petition Against Prisoner Release

Almagor group trying to keep in jail Palestinians who haven't committed to staying away from terror; court rejected earlier petition.

Haaretz Service
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Haaretz Service

The High Court of Justice will hear a petition Sunday against the impending release of some of the 500 Palestinian prisoners Israel is slated to free, Israel Radio reported Friday.

The petition comes after the High Court rejected a separate request, filed by the family members of terror victims, on Thursday.

The Almagor organization, which represents victims of Arab terror, is requesting that the court prevent the release of prisoners who have not expressed regret for their actions and committed to staying away from terrorism.

The group is also opposed to the release of 100 of the prisoners because they have not served two-thirds of their sentences. Israel had previously set the two-thirds rule as a condition for release, and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has agreed that Israel should retain that standard in principle while allowing room for change on a case-by-case basis.

On Thursday, the High Court rejected a separate petition against the prisoner release.

That petition was filed by family members of Israelis killed in terror attacks carried out by Palestinians who had been freed from Israeli jails in previous deals with the Palestinian Authority.

Justices Aharon Barak and Mishael Cheshin, who heard the petition on Wednesday, said the petitioners did not sufficiently prove that the government's decision to release the Palestinian prisoners was unreasonable enough to justify the court's intervention.

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