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Israel Returns Remains Of Palestinian Militants


Israel has transferred to the Palestinian Authority the bodies of 91 Palestinian militants who were reportedly killed in attacks against Israel.

The bodies include those of suicide bombers and militants killed in Israeli attacks -- some of which took place as long as 40 years ago.

The bodies had been buried in numbered graves in an Israeli military cemetery.

Seventy-nine of the bodies were being transferred to the West Bank and 12 to the Gaza Strip.

Official Palestinian ceremonies were to be held before the bodies are reburied.

Palestinians consider the militants heroes. Israel says they were terrorists.

The Israeli government says the transfer of the remains was a humanitarian gesture aimed at reviving peace talks.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, urged the two sides to take advantage of a new political opening and goodwill gestures to resume peace negotiations.

Direct talks between the two sides collapsed in December 2010 in a dispute over Israeli settlement building.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP

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