Hamas: Shalit Deal ‘Won’t Be for Months’


hamasNo notable progress in the negotiations to secure the release of captive soldier Gilad Shalit has been made, a Hamas official said last night, but the efforts are not being called off just yet. The official cited the election of a new Israeli government as the reason no breakthrough was expected in the coming months. He also noted that tensions on the border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, and attempts by Cairo to push Hamas into the mix, will not affect the Islamic organization’s position on the prisoner exchange deal.Meanwhile, Hamas legislator Mushir al-Masri, who heads the movement’s faction in the Palestinian parliament, warned that all options were still on the table in the struggle to free Palestinian prisoners – including additional kidnappings.

He added that Shalit would not be returned to his family until Israel agrees to free all the prisoners Hamas is demanding.

Speaking at an event for Palestinian prisoners organized by the Waed Society, which works on behalf of detainees, al-Masri praised the Palestinians for operating against Israel and said that ‘the resistance’ was unshakable.

Al-Masri also launched an attack against rival Palestinian faction Fatah. The negotiations between the two movements are also stagnated.

The legislator accused the Palestinian Authority’s security forces of betraying the Palestinian people by preventing armed Palestinian groups in the West Bank from kidnapping Israeli settlers and the soldiers guarding them.

Despite the decidedly pessimistic atmosphere, the campaign for Shalit’s release goes on. Last week dozens of members belonging to the headquarters for the release of Gilad Shalit held a somber Pesach seder outside the private residence of Prime Minister Binyanim Netanyahu in Yerushalayim.

The day before, Gilad’s parents, Noam and Aviva Shalit, met with Netanyahu for the first time since the latter took office.

They had little to say after emerging from Netanyahu’s office, with Noam commenting that “there is no reason for optimism at the moment, though we still hope that things will change. I hope things will start moving.”

{Ynet/Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel}


  1. We would never have been in this predicament if they would adhere to the Halachas pertaining to ransom for hostages and how to deal with kidnappers.