[JURIST] The Israeli cabinet on Monday approved the release of 441 Palestinian prisoners as a gesture of good will toward Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas [BBC profile] in preparation for a US-sponsored peace conference [NPR report], scheduled to begin at the end of the month. The release [JURIST report] approved fell short of the demand for the release of 2,000 prisoners by Abbas and other Palestinian leaders who will participate in the peace talks.
Israel released 86 Palestinian prisoners [JURIST report] in October and another 255 prisoners [JURIST report] in July after the government determined that they were not directly involved [press release] in the killing or wounding of Israelis. Some 9,000 Palestinians remain in Israeli prisons. AP has more.