MK Yitzhak Levy (NU/NRP) announced on Wednesday morning that he was prepared to support the release of his daughter's killers in return for kidnapped IDF Cpl. Gilad Schalit. Levy - whose daughter, Ayelet Hashahar, was killed by a car bomb in Jerusalem in November 2000 - sent a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, calling for the inclusion of the perpetrators of the attack in a prisoner swap deal, on the condition that they then be banished from Israel.
"First and foremost is the security of the citizens of Israel," Levy told The Jerusalem Post, adding that if the prisoners were sent beyond the borders of the State of Israel and the PA territories, "[from my perspective] the government can then make the exchange."
Levy insisted "the Israeli public will react favorably to the release of prisoners with blood on their hands, on the condition that they do not return to Gaza or the West Bank."
"We have to do everything possible to return our children home, and this includes releasing security prisoners," Levy said in an interview with Army Radio earlier in the day, stressing that, "Gilad's return home is more important than one prisoner or another sitting in jail."
Levy's announcement came two days after the prime minister announced at Monday's Sharm e-Sheikh summit that he would bring a proposal to the government suggesting Israel unilaterally free 250 Fatah-affiliated prisoners. In his letter, Levy criticized such actions.
"There is no place for such gestures," he wrote, adding that any agreement must be "contingent on Schalit's release."
According to Levy though, the Palestinian prisoners would undoubtedly return to their former bases of operation and continue to plan and carry out terror attacks against Israel if they were allowed to remain in the country.
"We have seen several times that prisoners who are released in various deals return to their evil ways and take active part in terrorist activity against Israeli citizens" Levy wrote, arguing that expelling the prisoners was the "only way in which the release of prisoners could be reasonable."
Levy added that he did not know the fate of those responsible for his daughter's death.
"I'm speaking in principle, not literally," he said. "Although it's reasonable to assume that the major planners are in jail because they carried out a number of terror attacks and not just this attack. But if they're in jail and could be exchanged for Schalit, I'm prepared for Israel to free them."