Protesters hold posters and banners with portraits of Palestinians jailed in Israeli prisons on March 8, 2014 during a demonstration to ask for their release at the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem's Old City. AFP PHOTO/AHMAD GHARABLI
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Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas's decisions on peace talks will play a key role in Israel deciding whether to release a new batch of prisoners, the chief Israeli negotiator said Tuesday.Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, speaking at a conference, linked the scheduled March 29 release of 26 veteran prisoners to Palestinian willingness to push forward with peace talks. Livni's remarks came after Israeli officials suggested the release might not go ahead unless the Palestinians agree to extend talks beyond a looming April 29 deadline.Bennett also accused Abbas of staying in the talks purely to ensure another 26 prisoners were freed.
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