Israel set to free 150 Palestinian prisoners
Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad and Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak held talks Saturday evening on security and political matters, officials from both sides said. The two men meet at Barak's residence in Tel Aviv for discussions on "security and political questions," according to a defence ministry statement.
The talks touched on the expected release of more than 150 Palestinian prisoners Sunday, along with the deployment of new Palestinian police forces in the West Bank, Israel's military radio reported.
According to the AP, Fayyad's office issued a statement following the closed-door meeting saying that he had insisted that Israel halt settlement construction and cease military raids into the West Bank in pursuit of Palestinian activists, which the Palestinian premier said undermine his government's authority. The statement said Fayyad also repeated Palestinian demands for the release of Marwan Barghouti, the most senior Fatah official in Israeli custody.