Israel set to release 229 Palestinian prisoners

Israel announced on Sunday that it would release on Monday 229 Palestinian prisoners as a goodwill gesture to the government of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. The prisoners were to have been let out last week for the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday but Israel said that Palestinian officials asked for their release to be postponed until Abbas returned from a pilgrimage to Mecca and was able to personally greet the freed prisoners. A senior Abbas aide, however, denied the president made such a request.