Olmert mulls further prisoner releases

Israeli premier Ehud Olmert is planning an additional Palestinian prisoner release prior to the high-stakes Mideast peace summit.

Olmert is examining a Palestinian request to free as many as 2,000 of the 12,000 Palestinian prisoners the Israeli regime holds, but has not decided how many people would be freed, or when.

Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad raised the demand in public saying it was high time the Israeli regime made a bold move to reassure the Palestinian people it is serious about peace negotiations.

The release of 2,000 prisoners ahead of the conference would help to ‘boost trust’, he said, as so many families have relatives incarcerated in Israeli jails.

Talks between the two sides ahead of the US-sponsored peace meeting have been disrupted by the Israeli regime’s reluctance to spell out how it hopes to resolve longstanding issues that have tormented peace talks in the past.

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