Report: Discreet negotiations for Shalit's release continue

Olmert tells foreign press he is "absolutely determined" to carry out realignment plan despite violence between Israel and the Palestinians.

July 10, 2006 10:58
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While Israel has not changed its official rejection of a cease-fire with Hamas, negotiations are being conducted through back channels for the release of kidnapped IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit, the London-based Al-Hayat reported Monday. Egyptian sources told the newspaper that Israel would be willing to commit to a withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, stop targeted killings, and release prisoners in exchange for Shalit's safe release and an end to Kassam rocket fire. Israel has not confirmed the report. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, speaking at a press conference for foreign reporters on Monday, asserted that he was "absolutely determined" to carry out his planned West Bank withdrawal, despite recent violence with the Palestinians. "I haven't changed my basic commitment to the realignment plan," he told foreign reporters. "I am absolutely determined to carry out the separation from the Palestinians and establish secure borders."

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