Peres grants humanitarian pardon to terminally ill Palestinian prisoner

Seriously ill

security prisoner Mohammed al-Taj, who served 2/3 of prison term, receives amnesty by President Peres

Raanan Ben-Zur

President Shimon Peres approved Thursday the release of Palestinian security prisoner Mohammed al-Taj, in accordance with Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and the security echelon’s advice.

Mohammed al-Taj

Hospitalized in a Prison Service medical facility, Al-Taj will be released due to medical reasons. Upon his release, he will be taken for further treatment in Ramallah, the Maan Palestinian news agency reported.

Al-Taj has served until now about two-thirds of his prison term. “The decision to release him was made for humanitarian reasons, since the prisoner is ill with a very serious disease,” said the president’s statement on the matter.

The statement added: “He is a security prisoner, who was sentenced to 14 years, 12 of which sentenced by court martial and another 20 months by the District Court.”

Deputy Minister for Prisoners’ Affairs Ziad Abu Ein said his office expended great efforts to bring about al-Taj’s release.

Last month, Palestinian administrative detainee Maisara Abu Hamdiyeh died in Beersheba’s Soroka University Medical Center.

After Abu Hamdiyeh’s death, riots broke out across the West Bank, and three mortar shells were fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip.

An autopsy of the prisoner’s body, conducted in the Israeli Abu Kabir’s Forensic Medicine Institute, revealed that he died from complications of cancer.


View original Ynet publication at:,7340,L-4369519,00.html