The Palestinian Ministry of the Interior in Gaza released 65 prisoners on Wednesday morning to commemorate the first day of the holy month of Ramadan. The prisoners chosen for the amnesty have already completed two-thirds of their sentences.
Justice Minister Atallah Abul-Sobah congratulated the men on their release. "We hope that you now take part in the rebuilding of your society instead of being the cause of chaos and anarchy," he said.
The Director of Reform Departments in the ministry, Colonel Atiyya Mansour, said that the amnesty is intended to encourage the prisoners to give up a life of crime and return to the straight and narrow in society. "The Ramadan amnesty also includes prisoners who have been bailed and granted home visits as part of the reform and rehabilitation programme," he said.
According to Mansour, drug dealers and drug addicts were excluded from the amnesty on this occasion as an incentive for them to mend their ways in the future. He pointed out that his department works hard to reform prisoners' characters, to rehabilitate them and make them supportive members of society.