Noam and Aviva Shalit with President Peres
Photo: Gil Yohanan
New Israeli negotiator David Meidan
Photo: Courtesy of the Prime Minister's Bureau

Report: New European mediator for Shalit deal

Senior Hamas element tells Egyptian paper new mediator has already exhibited creativity. Terror group claims previous mediator Gerhard Konrad backed Netanyahu

Egyptian newspaper al-Ahram reported Tuesday that a new European element has stepped in to replace Gerhard Konrad as the mediator in efforts to free captive soldier Gilad Shalit. The paper was quoting a source in Hamas's leadership.


The source refused to state the mediator's nationality but noted he has already exhibited "honesty and creativity." It was further claimed that Konrad had been backing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who had withdrawn understandings endorsed by his predecessor Ehud Olmert.


IDF Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz said Monday that Israel's efforts to retrieve kidnapped Shalit remain unwavering. Gantz spoke at a Passover Seder for Golani soldiers, held near the Gaza border.


"I can attest to the great effort in this complex case," he said, adding he had every hope that the intense work would soon come to fruition.


Dozes of supporters visited the Shalit family protest tent, located just across from Netanyahu's Jerusalem home.


The family did not celebrate Passover. The Shalit campaign released a statement saying that, "Starting at 6:30 pm, Noam and Aviva Shalit set across the gate leading to the prime minister's home, to remind him that nothing has change for Gilad tonight, just as it has not changes in any of his other 1,758 night in Hamas captivity."


On Sunday, Netanyahu announced he has appointed David Meidan, a senior section chief at the Mossad, to replace Hagai Hadas as the government's special representative in efforts to release Gilad Shalit.



פרסום ראשון: 04.19.11, 21:51
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