Security has been increased for Israeli cabinet ministers who have received death threats from Jewish militants for supporting Israel's proposed removal of troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip.
In the latest threat, an Israeli newspaper (Yediot Aharonot) reports Transport Minister Meir Sheetrit received a letter saying his family will be killed if he continues to support the pullout set for later this year.
Polls show at least two-thirds of Israelis favor ending the occupation of Gaza. But there is strong opposition from settlers and their supporters. Meanwhile, an Israeli cabinet committee has approved the release of 500 Palestinian prisoners in the next few days.
The decision is being described as a gesture to Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas. Israeli officials say they won't free any prisoners who were involved in violence against Israelis.
Information for this report is provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.