The Cabinet approved the release of 400 Palestinian prisoners, as part of a cease-fire agreement reached in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt nearly four months ago. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said it's a goodwill gesture to Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. "Israel has complaints about the Palestinians, even very serious complaints, relating to the implementation of the Sharm el-Sheikh understandings," Sharon told ministers. "But even those who believe the events of the coming months could strengthen extremist terrorist forces, must understand the need to bolster the main, moderate element of the Palestinian Authority and carry out what we promised." The “events” Sharon referred to include Palestinian parliamentary elections in July and the Israeli pullout from Gaza in August, which are expected to strengthen the Islamic terrorist group Hamas.
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