Syria Disrupting Negotiations on Return of Soldier Kidnapped to Gaza

[Jerusalem Post] Khaled Abu Toameh - Negotiations over the release of kidnapped IDF soldier Cpl. Gilad Shalit have stalled because of the intervention of Syria, which is exerting pressure on the Hamas leadership not to accept proposals made by Egyptian mediators for a prisoner swap with Israel, PA officials in Ramallah said Thursday. "Syria is playing a very negative role," said one official. "[Hamas leader] Khaled Mashaal, who is based in Damascus, is refusing to approve an Egyptian-brokered deal because the Syrians are inciting him." Another senior PA official said, "Had it not been for the intervention of the Syrians, the Israeli soldier would have been released a long time ago."

2006-09-08 01:00:00

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