Israel to hand over 84 Arab bodies soon: Palestinian minister

08:15, July 05, 2011      

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Israel will hand over the bodies of 84 Palestinians and Arabs that have been withheld since 1967, a Palestinian minister said Monday.

Hussien Al-Sheikh, Palestinian Civil Affairs' Minister, said that the delivery of the bodies will take place within days. He added that Israel agreed to give back the bodies after nearly a year of intensive contacts and negotiations.

After that, Israel will still hold 102 bodies in military cemeteries, Al-Sheikh added. He hoped that the 102 bodies would also be handed over soon.

Official funeral ceremonies will be held at Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' compound in the West Bank before the bodies are given to the families, according to Al-Sheikh.

The last time Israel released the Palestinian bodies was in 2008 under a prisoner exchange deal with Hezbollah.

Source: Xinhua
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