Israel to Free Bombers, Killers in Soldier Swap

Jerusalem releases names of first prisoners to be freed
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2011 5:20 PM CDT
A supporter of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit waits for Shalit's parents at their home in Mitzpe Hila, northern Israel, Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2011.   (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
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(Newser) – The founders of Hamas' militant wing. The organizer of a Jerusalem bombing that killed 15. A woman who lured a lovelorn Israeli teen to a Palestinian city to be murdered. All will be released in Israel's planned swap of Palestinian political prisoners for a single kidnapped Israeli solder, the New York Times reports. Israel today revealed the names of the first 477 prisoners to be exchanged for Gilad Shalit on Tuesday.

Israel promises to free another 550 over the next 2 months, but won't return all to their West Bank homes; some 200 will go to Gaza or into exile. Another 6,000 prisoners will remain behind bars in Israel. In Gaza, Hamas is claiming victory for negotiating the swap, but other Palestinians are unhappy—over specific prisoners still being held, or Israeli courtroom procedures that they say convicted too many innocent people.

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