Mashaal 311 (R).
(photo credit: Reuters)
Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal on Thursday held talks in Cairo with the head of
Egypt’s General Intelligence Service, Murad Mawafi, over the prisoner exchange
agreement between Hamas and Israel.
Sources close to Hamas in the Gaza
Strip said that the two men discussed ways of implementing the agreement,
including the transfer of Gilad Schalit from the Gaza Strip to
PM thanks Egypt for 'heartwarming' role in Schalit deal
'Schalit to be back home in Israel by next week'
“Schalit is still in the Gaza Strip and he hasn’t been moved to
Egypt,” the sources said on Thursday in response to a report
in the Egyptian
media to the effect that the IDF soldier had already been handed over to the
Mashaal arrived in Cairo at the head of a Hamas
delegation to thank Egypt for its central role in reaching the prisoner swap, a
Hamas official said.
“We thank Egypt for leading with us strenuous
negotiations,” Mashaal told reporters in Cairo. “This agreement is an historic
achievement for the Palestinian struggle.”
He is expected to meet soon
with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to discuss ways of ending the
dispute between Hamas and Fatah, the official said.
According to the
Hamas official, the meeting could take place as early as next
Meanwhile, Ezat Risheq, a senior Damascus-based Hamas official,
said that the second phase of the Egyptian-mediated deal would be carried out two
months after the first stage is completed.
Risheq pointed out that the
deal includes many “princes of the resistance” such as Yehya Sinwar, Rouhi
Mushtahi, Zaher Jabareen and Muhammad Sharatha.
“This deal fulfills 90
percent of our demands,” Risheq said. “It also includes the fulfillment of all
the demands of the prisoners who are on hunger strike [in Israeli prisons].”