Yishai: Free Jewish security prisoners as part of Schalit deal

Shas leader Eli Yishai on Tuesday sent a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann and Public Security Minster Avi Dichter, saying that as part of a deal with Hamas to secure the release of captured IDF soldier Gilad Schalit, Jewish security prisoners convicted of attacks on Palestinians should also be freed. "I turn to you with a request to advance the release of these prisoners so that the wider Israeli public can feel that gestures are made on both sides," wrote Yishai, explaining that he was referring to a number of Israeli citizens who were convicted of various hate crimes. "Many Israeli citizens are asking why Israel is not freeing Jewish prisoners who were sentenced for crimes they carried out due to the security situation," continued the letter. Yishai stressed that he was calling for the release of prisoners who confessed that they had erred in taking the law into their own hands and had publicly expressed remorse for their actions. The Shas leader claimed that as opposed to many of their Palestinian counterparts, no Jewish security prisoner that had been released had re-offended.