PM on Schalit deal: Hamas planning attacks from jail

PM says he's working all the time, in various ways to free Schalit, “only a little of what is being done is known to the public.”

March 15, 2011 23:26
1 minute read.
Five minutes of silence for Schalit

Five Miniute silence Gilad Schalit 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

As many in the country took five minutes out on Tuesday to remember kidnapped soldier Gilad Schalit, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that Hamas’s insistence on the release of hardened murderers to Judea and Samaria was holding up a deal for his release.

“Some of the most difficult attacks we have faced over the last year, and I’m not talking about the slaughter in Itamar, were planned and encouraged by Hamas elements from Israeli prisons,” Netanyahu said during a tour of the fence being built on the border with Egypt.

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“That is what they do when they are inside prison. The release of a kernel of murderers like this to Judea and Samaria will enable them to do much more, not only in Judea and Samaria, but also in Israeli cities – Jerusalem, Petah Tikva, Afula – everywhere,” he stated.

Negotiations over the release of Schalit broke down months ago when Netanyahu made clear that there were certain terrorists whom he would not free, and others who would be released only on the condition that they not be allowed back into the West Bank.

Hamas refused, and the talks have been stalled ever since.

Netanyahu said that as prime minister, he had a responsibility to do everything he could to gain Schalit’s freedom, but at the same time he also had a responsibility to protect the seven million citizens of the country.

The prime minister said he was working all the time and in various ways to free Schalit, and that “only a little of what is being done is known to the public.”

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