A Week Late, Israel ‘Cancels’ Prisoner Release, Blaming PA

Claims PA Retaliation as Justification for Move

Israel’s government is playing a bit fast and loose with the facts these days, and is looking for a wholesale revision of the past week of moves by them and the Palestinian Authority to portray their moves as “retaliation” for things the PA hadn’t actually done yet.

Last Saturday, Israel was scheduled to release the final batch of Palestinian prisoners, but amid growing complaints from their coalition’s far-right, they reneged on the deal, never even holding the cabinet meeting to discuss the release.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, in reaction to Israel reneging on the release, signed 15 international conventions on Tuesday, mostly UN-related. The PA confirmed Wednesday that they would back out of those signatures if Israel followed through on the prisoner release, because apparently better late than never.

Instead, Israel announced today that it has “cancelled” the release outright, and is doing so to punish the Palestinians for Abbas’ convention signings, even though those came three days after the prisoners were supposed to be released, and in direct retaliation for the release not happening.

Israeli officials say they aren’t done there, and are going to take other measures to really stick it to the Palestinians, including harsh new restrictions on the PA, and the revocation of a permit to install cell phone infrastructure in the Gaza Strip.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.