(photo credit: AP [file])
The Palestinian Authority plans to name dozens of West Bank streets after Palestinian security prisoners who were involved in murdering Israelis or carrying out terrorist attacks, a PA minister said on Wednesday.
Issa Qaraqi, who was recently appointed prisoners affairs minister in Salaam Fayad's government, said the streets would be named after at least 100 Palestinians who were serving terms of 20 years or more in Israeli jails.
Qaraqi is also head of the Palestinian Prisoners Club, a Bethlehem-based group that defends the rights of security prisoners and documents Israeli "violations" of human rights in prisons.
He said the decision was taken as part of the PA government's solidarity with the prisoners, especially those who have been sentenced to lengthy terms or life in prison.
Qaraqi said the initiative to name streets after security prisoners would be launched next week in coordination between his ministry and the PA's Ministry for Local Government.
"This is the legitimate right of the Palestinians," he explained. "We have the honor and duty to honor our prisoners in recognition of their sacrifices and steadfastness in Israeli prisons."
Many streets in West Bank cities and villages have already been named after Palestinian "martyrs" who were killed in clashes with Israel over the past few decades.
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