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Report: Shalit Deal Hinges on Israel Release of Four Terrorists Print E-mail

By Avi Issacharoff
Febuary 9, 2009

Tags: Terrorist, Hamas, Gaza 

A deal for the release of abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit hinges on a dispute between Israel and Hamas over four Palestinian prisoners whom Israel refuses to free, two pan-Arab newspapers reported Monday.

Israel has agreed, however, to release all of the other prisoners Hamas is demanding in return for Shalit, the London-based dailies Al-Quds al-Arabi and Al-Sharq Al-Awsat reported.

The papers named the four as Abdullah Barghouti, Ibrahim Hamad and Abbas Sayed, all Hamas men, and Ahmed Sa'adat, the leader of the Popular.

Each of the prisoners was behind a string of terror attacks. Sayed was the mastermind of the massacre at the Park Hotel in Netanya on Passover in 2002, in which 29 civilians were killed.

Abdullah Barghouti, a relative of jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, prepared the bomb belts and devices used in terror attacks. These included the bombings in Jerusalem at the Sbarro pizza parlor, the Moment café and the cafeteria at the Hebrew University, as well as the suicide attack at the Sheffield snooker hall in Rishon Letzion.

Hamad, the commander of the armed wing of Hamas in Ramallah, has also been convicted of involvement in a number of these attacks.

Sa'adat is in jail for ordering the 2001 assassination of former tourism minister Rehavam Ze'evi.

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