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(photo credit: Channel 10)
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said on Tuesday that comments he made on Monday about kidnapped IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev were misunderstood, and that he did not mean to imply that they were dead.
"From Israel's perspective, we believe they [the kidnapped soldiers] are still alive," Olmert told reporters in Kiryat Malachi.
On Monday, Olmert told a group of high school students that Israel had pulled out of this summer's Lebanon war despite the fact that Goldwasser and Regev had not been rescued in order to save other soldiers' lives.
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"If Goldwasser and Regev were still alive," Olmert had told the high school students, "it was better for them to remain captive a little while longer than for other soldiers to die in an attempt to rescue them."
Goldwasser's mother, Miki, told Army Radio on Tuesday morning that Olmert should "talk less and do more" to secure the release of the kidnapped IDF reservists.
"[Olmert] spoke without weighing his remarks," Miki Goldwasser said, adding that the prime minister's manner of expression was well-known.
Eldad Regev's father, Benny, said that it was wrong of Olmert to "making light" of the fact that his son and Goldwasser were still held hostage.
"It wasn't right to talk about [their captivity] as 'one day more or less'," Regev told Army Radio.