Barak: Gov't has moral obligation to return soldiers alive or dead

The government's decision to accept a prisoner exchange deal with Hizbullah on Sunday was motivated by a responsibility to bring kidnapped IDF reservists Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev back to Israel, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said during a Labor faction meeting on Monday. "The deliberations yesterday were long, important, heavy and serious," he said. "We have a moral obligation to return our soldiers from a mission whether they are alive or unfortunately dead. That's what guided the government's decision." Barak also commented on progress in talks with Hamas to bring kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Schalit back to Israel, saying that he hoped that "the cease-fire would help intensify the negotiations."