Friends of Gilad Schalit to hold protest seder outside PM's residence

Friends of kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Schalit will hold a seder, the festival meal of Passover, on Wednesday night, across from the residence of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem. The move comes to protest the previous government's failure to bring about the soldier's release through a prisoner exchange. Personal invitations to MKs to participate in the protest seder will be sent on Saturday evening, the group organizing the event said. "Gilad could have been home by now had the former prime minister put the issue of releasing him at the top of the national agenda," said Yoav Balaks, head of the Friends for the Kidnapped Soldiers organization. "This year, we will mark the holiday across from the house of the elected prime minister, and we will call on him not to repeat Ehud Olmert's mistakes and to bring Gilad back home immediately." Last week, the negotiations to release Schalit were reportedly put on hold pending a decision by Netanyahu to rebrief Ofer Dekel, Olmert's point man on prisoner exchange, and send him back to Cairo. Egyptian sources said they were waiting to see whether the new government would pick up where Olmert's government left off or begin the negotiations anew.