Saturday, May 17, 2008

Report: Egypt warns Hamas of major IDF Gaza raid if Shalit not freed

"Head of Egyptian Intelligence General Omar Suleiman has warned Hamas that the failure to include kidnapped Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit in a prisoner exchange with Israel will lead to a wide-spread IDF operation in the Gaza Strip, according to a report in the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar.

"Israel will use a heavy hand against Hamas in the Gaza Strip if an agreement is not reached that secures the release of the kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit" Suleiman told the second-in-command of the militant group's political bureau Moussa Abu Marzook, according to Al-Akhbar.

Senior Palestinian officials reportedly told Al-Akhbar that even though Hamas is ready to include Shalit in a future deal, they are not willing to accept the list of prisoners Israel has offered to release in exchange for the soldier, held by the militant group since he was kidnapped and wounded by Gaza militants in a cross border raid in June 2006......."

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