A bipartisan group of US lawmakers is asking FBI Director Robert Mueller and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to put Palestinians released from prison in the Shalit swap on the terrorist watch list.
In a letter this week to Mueller and Clinton, the lawmakers said the Palestinians who were convicted on various terrorism charges should not be allowed to enter the United States.
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Each one of the released Palestinians was convicted of terror-related offences and should be treated as such, the letter said.
In the swap earlier this month, Israel released hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in exchange for tank crewman Sgt. Gilad Shalit, who had been held by Hamas for more than five years.
Signing the letter were 36 House Republicans and Democrats led by Rep. Howard Berman, the top Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee.
Last week it was reported that the US told Israel it was concerned about some of the Palestinian detainees freed as part of the Shalit swap.
State Department spokesman Mark Toner said some of these prisoners posed a threat and that the US had objected to their release and informed Israel of the American position on the matter. Despite the US concerns, Israel proceeded to free the terrorists as part of the Shalit swap.
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