Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas greets freed Palestinian prisoners at his headquarters in the West bank city of Ramallah on 30 October, 2013. (AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP/Getty Images)

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has given each former Palestinian prisoner freed in recent months as part of the latest round of peace negotiations a lump sum of at least $50,000 and a cushy government gig, the Times of Israel reports. Nearly all of the prisoners, 26 of whom were released late last month, had been jailed for attacks on Israeli citizens before the 1993 Oslo Accords.

The salary granted to each prisoner depended upon the length of his incarceration. Those who were held for over 25 years were entitled to $50,000, in addition to a position as a deputy minister or a promotion to the rank of major-general in the security forces, both of which earn monthly wages of NIS 14,000 (nearly $4,000).

The news of the hefty payouts is likely to reignite debate over the controversial prisoner releases, which have been framed as the second of a four-part plan agreed upon during recent negotiations.

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