'Every hour that passes, Schalit becomes like Ron Arad'

Kadima MK Shaul Mofaz tells Army Radio gov't should "stop scaring us" about releasing Hamas prisoners, "we know how to deal with terrorists."

By JPOST.COM STAFF
June 27, 2011 08:57
1 minute read.
shaul mofaz 248.88

shaul mofaz 248.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

 
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Every hour that passes, captured Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit's situation becomes more like that of Ron Arad, MK Shaul Mofaz (Kadima) told Army Radio on Monday morning.

"How can it be that there hasn't been progress for a year in a half over this issue?" Mofaz said in the interview. "We cannot live in a reality in which Gilad's situation becomes like that of Ron Arad."

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The Kadima MK said the only way to move forward in efforts to release Schalit is through a prisoner exchange, and called on the government to "stop scaring us" about the backlash of releasing Hamas prisoners, saying "We know how to deal with terrorists."

"The prime minister is only making headlines. He is only dealing with tactical issues, with the prisoners' conditions in Israeli jails," Mofaz told Army Radio. "This is not what will bring Schalit home."

Commenting on Netanyahu's decision to revoke privileges for Hamas prisoners, Mofaz said the biggest problem was the smuggling of cellphones into prisoner jail cells. He also said he was "not moved" by Hamas's decision to hold a one-day hunger strike on Monday in protest of the worsening conditions.

Asked about differences of opinion within Hamas about the prisoner exchange, Mofaz acknowledged Hamas was experiencing dilemmas over the issue, but said Israel is in a position to help them and the Palestinians overcome problems.

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On Sunday, marking five years since Gilad was kidnapped by Hamas, the soldier's exasperated family embarked on a new SMS campaign to save their son, as the government and Hamas continue to accuse each other of refusing to make a deal for a prisoner swap.

“Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, you do not have the right to sentence Gilad to death,” Gilad’s father, Noam, said at a press conference after Sunday’s cabinet meeting.

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