Turkey to host freed Palestinians

Turkey will take in some of the Palestinians freed in a swap deal with Israel, a foreign ministry official has said.

Turkey will take in some of the Palestinians freed in a swap deal with Israel, a foreign ministry official has said.

The official would not say how many of the freed inmates Turkey would take, or when they would arrive, saying those details would "become clearer in time".

Private NTV television said 10 Palestinians were expected in Istanbul.

Under the prisoner swap deal, 1,027 Palestinian prisoners will be released in return for a captured Israeli soldier, Gilad Schalit.

Palestinian officials had previously said 40 prisoners would be deported to Turkey, Syria, Qatar and Jordan.

When the exchange is complete, 477 Palestinians held in Israeli jails, including 27 women, will have been released, several of them after decades behind bars.

More than 200 prisoners, originally from the West Bank, will instead be sent to the fenced-off Gaza Strip.

The final 550 Palestinians are due to be freed in about two months.

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