Israel and Hamas have published a list of the first group of 477 Palestinian prisoners due to be freed on Tuesday in exchange for the freedom of the kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
Shimon Peres has been handed the files of prisoners whose release he still needs to approve.
Last night dozens of Israelis demonstrated outside the president’s residence to protest against the deal which will eventually see 1,027 Palestinians freed.
“Even though all of us want Gilad Shalit home, we have to act with force to release him and not by surrendering to terror and releasing people that killed 600 jews,” said activist Baruch Marzel.
A large number of the Palestinian prisoners are thought to have been involved in anti-Israeli extremism, fuelling the outcry.
The list contains the names of 450 men and 27 women. Israelis opposing the swap deal have 48 hours to appeal to the country’s highest court.
Israeli army radio says most of the prisoners are being grouped together today in a southern jail.
After his release, Gilad Shalit will reportedly be transferred from Gaza to Egypt before being flown home by helicopter.