The Israeli Ministerial Cabinet held a meeting on Sunday, to discuss the release of 26 Palestinian detainees as part of direct talks with the Palestinian Authority, and determined the names of the detainees.The 26 are detainees who have been imprisoned by Israel since before the first Oslo Agreement of 1994.
Those detainees spent between 19 -28 years in Israel prisons, five of them are from Gaza. They will be released this coming Tuesday.
The announcement came after the Legislative Committee of the Knesset turned down a proposed bill filed by Israeli Member of Knesset, Orit Strock, demanding a legislation that would prevent the release of Palestinian political prisoners.
Israeli media sources have reported that eight ministers, including four of the Likud Party of Benjamin Netanyahu, voted against the proposed bill, while only ministers of the Jewish Home and Israel Our Home fundamentalist parties voted for it.
Nine of the 26 detainees were taken prisoner between the years 1984 and 1986. The rest were taken prisoner in the period between 1990 and 1994.
23 of them have been sentenced to more than 99 years, while the remaining three are serving terms that range between 28 and 38 years.
After direct peace talks were resumed, Israel released, on August 14, 26 veteran detainees, held before the first Oslo Agreement, and agreed to release the second phase on October 29, a third phase on December 29, and a fourth on March 28 2014.
This was part of an agreement, mediated by the United States, to ensure the resumption of peace talks that were halted for three years due to ongoing Israeli violations, including invasions, arrests, and ongoing settlement activities.
The agreement is meant to ensure the release of all 104 detainees held by Israel since before 1993 on four stages.