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Hundreds protest return to negotiations in Ramallah

July 28, 2013 3:42 P.M. (Updated: July 29, 2013 7:49 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Hundreds of Palestinians marched in Ramallah on Sunday to protest a return to negotiations with Israel.

Demonstrators marched from the city center towards President Abbas' headquarters in the Muqata, chanting slogans condemning the Palestinian Authority's decision to return to talks.

Four PA police officers and three protesters were injured when both sides clashed during the march, which was organized by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a Ma'an reporter said.

Addameer prisoners group said dozens of protesters were injured by police, adding that PA forces were arresting injured demonstrators at public hospitals.

Palestinian Legislative Council member Khaled Jarrar was assaulted by a policeman during the clashes, witnesses said.

In Jerusalem, dozens of Israelis gathered outside the government complex to protest Israeli premier Netanyahu's decision to release 104 Palestinian prisoners, Ynet reported.

The demonstrators chanted: "You do not release murderers of children" and "Bibi is a coward."

Leader of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennet joined the protest, calling the proposed prisoner release a "disgrace" and saying "terrorists should be eliminated, not freed," Ynet reported.

Netanyahu was seeking cabinet approval on Sunday for the release of 104 veteran Palestinian and Israeli-Arab prisoners, to coincide with the resumption of peace talks.

The start of the meeting was delayed for over an hour, as Israeli media said Netanyahu sought to win over opponents within his own right-wing Likud party.

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators are to meet in Washington on July 30 for a round of talks after a three-year break in peace negotiations, a Palestinian official said on Saturday.

The Palestinian delegation would be led by chief negotiator Saeb Erekat with the Israelis headed by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni.

US officials will also take part.

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