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Hamas Proposes Prisoner Swap Roadmap, Lebanese Media Says

September 24, 2021

by: Elior Levy

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Gilad Shalit, who was held prisoner by Hamas for five years, upon his return to Israel

Friday, 24 September 2021 | Deputy Hamas leader Zahar Jabarin said his organization presented Egyptian mediators with proposals for a prisoner swap with Israel, Lebanon’s Al Akhbar newspaper reported on Tuesday.

The government said that the return to Israel of the remains [of Israeli soldiers] Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, both killed in the 2014 Gaza war, and the release of two Israeli civilians held by Hamas were a precondition for any long lasting cease-fire agreement along the Gaza border and the rebuilding of Gaza after the 11 days of fighting last May.

In the first of two options reported by Al Akhbar, Hamas proposed a comprehensive deal that would include the release of all prisoners who were released in the deal to secure the release of Gilad Shalit in 2011, who were subsequently arrested again.

Shalit was held by Hamas in Gaza for five years. Among the prisoners were some convicted of murder.

In addition, Hamas demanded the release of all women and children incarcerated by Israel and of prisoners suffering from poor health.

According to the proposal, Hamas will then release the bodies of two Israeli soldiers killed in the 2014 Gaza war and the two civilians held in Gaza.

The second proposal that was reported by the Lebanese publication was for a two-staged deal that would first see the release of women and children from jail, as well as the prisoners who were arrested after their release in the Shalit swap. Hamas would then provide information regarding Israelis dead or alive in its possession.

Only after the release of thousands of Palestinian terrorists, among them those described as having blood on their hands, will the Israelis be returned.

Israeli sources told Ynet in recent days that there was no breakthrough in negotiations to secure the return of Israelis held by Hamas.

According to Senior Israeli officials, Jerusalem opposes any release of Hamas prisoners with blood on their hands.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett discussed Israel’s demand for the return of the soldiers and civilians in a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi last week.

Participants in the talks included Israel’s coordinator for prisoners and MIA’s along with National Security Advisor Eyal Hulata. Egypt’s head of Intelligence, Abbas Kamel, who acts as mediator between the Israeli government and the Hamas terror group, was also present.

Posted on September 24, 2021

Source: (Excerpt from an article originally published by Ynetnews on September 21, 2021. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our publication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: IDF/Flickr.com

Photo License: Wikimedia

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