The longest-serving Palestinian prisoner held by Israel has been released after serving 40 years.
Karim Younis was convicted in 1983 of kidnapping and killing Israeli soldier Avi Blomberg three years earlier in the occupied Golan Heights.
During his imprisonment, he became a prominent figure, writing political works and calling for a pact with Israel.
Younis holds Israeli citizenship, but Israel’s interior minister has asked for it to be revoked.
Aye Deli told the ombudsman that it would send an important message to those who have “become a symbol for committing the criminal act of terrorism”.
Palestinian President Abbas said Eunice “is a steadfast symbol of the Palestinian people and of the free people of the world”.
Israeli media reported that Younis was released early Thursday in the central Israeli town of Raana without his family being notified to avoid celebrations.
He was then received by his family and friends in his hometown of Ara, in northern Israel, while police are monitoring his reception on the orders of National Security Minister Itamar Bengwir.
Bengwir tweeted that until the new right-wing government passes a law imposing the death penalty on terrorists, they will be released from prison only in a “humiliating” manner.
“It’s been 40 years full of stories,” Eunice said, with black and white kefir wrapped around her shoulders.
“I am very proud to be one of those who sacrificed for Palestine.”
Before his release, Eunice wrote that he felt sorry for the Palestinian prisoners he was leaving in prison. Among them is his cousin Maher Younis, who was convicted of the same kidnapping and murder and is expected to be released later this month.
Avi Bromberg’s sister, Ada, told Israel Hayom on Tuesday: “I can’t imagine people like this walking among us, laughing and having fun.”
Abbas declared that releasing Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons was “the cause of the whole Palestinian people.”
According to the Palestinian human rights group Addameer, there are about 4,700 prisoners in Israeli prisons and detention centers. Among them are 150 minors and 835 administrative detainees who have not been charged or tried.