Shalit's last photo in uniform
Photo: Vadim Lidin
Aviva and Noam Shalit still waiting for their son
Photo: Herzl Yosef
Abu Marzouk. Insists on "heavy" prisoners
Photo: AP

Shalit deal: Mediator visits Gaza, negotiations stagnant

New development in negotiations to release captive soldier: After months of no contacs between Hamas, Israel German mediator Gerhard Konard visited Gaza two weeks ago, however no breakthrough achieved

After months of deadlock in the negotiations to free kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit, German mediator Gerhard Konrad visited Gaza and met with Hamas senior officials after holding meetings in Israel.


Hamas Deputy Politburo Chief Moussa Abu Marzouk told the London-based al-Hayat newspaper that Kondrad had visited Gaza two weeks ago.


The Hamas official did not say what Konrad had offered Hamas but stressed that the Islamist group's stance had not changed and that negotiations with Israel were still stagnant. The visit marked the German mediatior's first arrival to the Gaza Strip in more than six months.


Abu Marzouk blamed Israel for impeding the deal after backing out on its lastest pledges. The Hamas official said that the Islamist group remains firm in its insistence that the deal include all "heavy-duty" prisoners and those Israel regards as having blood on their hands.


A Hamas source in Gaza refused to confirm or deny the details of Konrad's visit or whether in fact it took place, but noted that the Shalit affair was in a deadlock.


"Our demands still stand and the Israeli refusal also still stands. As we have warned in the past, we shall continue doing everything in our power to release our prisoners, including capturing more Israeli soldiers," he said.


He added that there was no chance that Hamas would back down from its demands.



פרסום ראשון: 10.16.10, 09:30
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