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Israel opposes partial prisoner exchange deal with Hamas

Jerusalem24 – Hamas is ready to make a quick prisoners swap with Israel on a humanitarian basis, an international mediator has informed the Lebanese network Al Mayadeen.

Hamas would release Israeli prisoner Hisham Al-Sayed in exchange for sick Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons.

Hamas, through its military spokesman Abu Obaida’s telegram channel, published a video yesterday afternoon of the Israeli Bedouin prisoner Hisham Al-Sayed in “satisfactory” condition, hours after Abu Obaida announced that the health condition of one of its Israeli prisoners had deteriorated.

Al-Sayed can be seen wearing an oxygen mask. The video shows his Israeli identity card and the camera lingers on a television screen showing an Al Jazeera report from an economic conference in Qatar a few days earlier, demonstrating the video was taken recently.

Israeli news outlet Yedioth Ahronoth reported this afternoon that the Israeli occupation government is opposed to a partial prisoners exchange deal with Hamas that only includes the two prisoners Hisham Al-Sayed and Avira Mengistu, without including soldiers Shaul Aaron and Hadar Goldin.

According to Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom, Israel has in the past insisted that Al-Sayed was already dead. However, Hamas’s Al Qassam Brigades have repeatedly asserted that a number of the captured Israeli soldiers are alive. “The recently released video by Al-Qassam’s ‘Shadow Unit’ caught many, including Israelis, by surprise,” according to the newspaper.

Analysts suggest that the timing of Hamas’ video is meant to speed up a prisoners exchange in light of Israel’s current political transition.

However, Yedioth Ahronoth quoted sources saying that current Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, whose term ends this evening with the completion of the dissolution process for the Knesset, and alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid, have decided not to engage in a partial prisoner exchange deal and instead push for a deal that includes all four prisoners.

Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Yair Lapid said in a thread on Twitter that the state of Israel “will continue to make every effort possible to bring back the Israeli soldiers and Israeli citizens who are being held captive by Hamas.”




Nadeen Alshaer

Alshaer is a Palestinian journalist, a Birzeit University graduate with a B.A. in TV and Radio Broadcasting Journalism. Alshaer has 6 years of experience in journalism. She currently works as a reporter, editor and presenter/producer for PBC-Palestine TV and Jerusalem24 radio. She’s a UN and Kelley School of Business alumna.

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