[JURIST] Israel's cabinet voted Sunday to release 500 Palestinian prisoners in what is being termed a "goodwill gesture" to help build relations with new Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. The cabinet also agreed to allow over 200 Palestinian laborers to enter from the Gaza Strip for the first time in months.
The 500 prisoners are expected to be released later this week. Israel expects to free 400 more prisoners in the coming weeks. Still, some Palestinians are disappointed by the numbers, demanding the release of all prisoners. Almost 8,000 are held [Palestinian prisoners advocacy website]. None of the prisoners scheduled to be released [AFP report] have been convicted of roles in deadly attacks. The list of those to be released will be made public in order to allow appeal of the releases. Reuters has more. The Jerusalem Post provides local coverage.