'Israel must presume reservists dead'

Steinitz: No negotiations without sign of life; Karnit Goldwasser: We won't respond to foreign press.

Regev Goldwasser 224.88 (photo credit: Channel 10)
Regev Goldwasser 224.88
(photo credit: Channel 10)
As long as there is no sign of life from kidnapped reservists Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, Israel must assume that they are dead unless otherwise informed, so as not to "encourage their captors to trade in information on their condition," MK Yuval Steinitz (Likud) told Israel Radio on Sunday. Responding to a Der Spiegel report that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was planning to announce that the two soldiers were no longer alive, Steinitz declared that Israel must remain firm that there would be no negotiations with Hizbullah over the captives until a sign of life was received. He added that the soldiers' families must be told the whole truth, even if they didn't want to hear it. An Israeli official said on Saturday night that unless it was proven otherwise, Israel was assuming the captives were alive and would continue to negotiate on that basis. Goldwasser's wife Karnit told Israel Radio that the families would not respond to any foreign media sources, and would accept updates only from official Israeli diplomatic sources. Regev's father, Tzvi, echoed Goldwasser's sentiment, telling Israel Radio that he had not yet received any information from official sources. He said that his family was prepared for any news, good or bad, but that they were still hoping for good news.