Jerusalem: Twenty-six Palestinian prisoners were released from the Ayalon prison in central Israel Tuesday evening, an Israeli official said.
The 26 prisoners, charged with perpetrating deadly terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens, were taken to two checkpoints in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank, and were released there later, Xinhua reported citing Israel's prisons service spokesperson.
The release is part of a gesture by the Israeli government, which approved July 28 the release of 104 prisoners in several batches in coming months, after peace talks with the Palestinians resumed.
The list of the 26 prisoners was authorised by an Israeli ministerial panel, under the advisement of the Shin Bet, Israel's security agency.
Direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians renewed in Washington July 30, after a three-year halt, caused by Israel's settlement construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.
The second round of talks is scheduled to take place in Jerusalem Wednesday afternoon.