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Gilad Shalit deal: West Bank prepares to welcome Palestinians home

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The walls of Hanan Barghouti's home are covered with pictures of Nael and her other brother, Omar, who will not be released. Hanna lays sweets on the table and cleans the apartment they have built for her brother, which is filled with neighbors and extended family dropping by to offer congratulations and assistance.

Nael Barghouti was 19 when he was given a life sentence for his role in the killing of an Israeli solider in the West Bank in 1978. He will be released just weeks before his 54th birthday.

Free, but not headed home

A total of 477 Palestinian prisoners will be released this week, but not all of them will be seeing their friends and family soon. About 200 of them, such as Muna Amna, who lured a 16-year-old Israeli boy to a violent death via a chat room in 2001, will be freed but sent to the Gaza Strip, rather than her West Bank village.

Also in this category is the iconic Abed al Aziz Salaha, who showed crowds the literal blood on his hands after the killing of two Israelis in Ramallah in 2000. The photo of him holding his blood-covered palms out a window became a key image of the second Intifada and a symbol of terror for many Israelis. He too is being sent to Gaza, not his native West Bank.

Although Hamas negotiators agreed to these conditions, Sahar Frances, the director of Ramallah-based Addameer Prisoners’ Support and Human Rights Association, says this deportation is illegal.

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