Red Cross praises release of Schalit, Palestinian prisoners

October 18, 2011 14:33

The International Committee of the Red Cross on Tuesday praised the release of Gilad Schalit and 477 Palestinian prisoners as part of an agreement between Israel and Hamas.

"The events of today are the source of happiness for many families who have reunited with their loved ones," the ICRC said in a statement.

The statement expressed the ICRC's disappointment that Hamas had not allowed them to check on Schalit's status or to send him messages from his family during his more than five years in captivity.

The ICRC also decried the refusal of the Israel Prisons Service to allow the families of imprisoned Palestinians to visit their loved ones.

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