October 11th, 2011
03:43 PM ET

Israel, Hamas: Gilad Shalit to be swapped for Palestinian prisoners

[Updated at 3:43 p.m. ET] Israeli Army Radio reports that the exchange could involve the release of 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, including women and children.

Israeli media are reporting that Hamas will soon announce the names of Palestinian prisoners that Israel will release in exchange for the return of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

[Updated at 3:22 p.m. ET] Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at a cabinet meeting Tuesday that Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit - captured in Israel in June 2006 by Palestinian militants - will be returning to Israel in the next couple of days after a prisoner exchange with the Palestinians was brokered to release his freedom.

"We will return Gilad healthy and whole to his family and all of Israel," Netanyahu said. "The negotiations were difficult... we had to make difficult decisions but (the) correct one. With all the change taking place in the Middle East we did not know if a better deal or any deal would have been possible."

[Updated at 3:00 p.m. ET] A tweet from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says: "We have concluded ardeous negotiations with #Hamas to release #Gilad #Shalit. He will be coming home in the next few days."

A following tweet said: "the agreement to release #Shalit was signed in initials last Thursday and today was signed formally by the two parties."

[Updated at 2:54 p.m. ET] A deal has been brokered to exchange Palestinian prisoners for Gilad Shalit, Hamas military wing spokesman Abu Obeida confirmed to CNN.

[Posted at 2:23 p.m. ET] Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called a government meeting at 8 p.m. Tuesday to discuss the possible release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, an Israeli government official told CNN.

The official said Netanyahu would not have called such a meeting unless he thought that the proposals for Shalit's release were serious.

Click here for more about Shalit.

Shalit was captured in Israel in June 2006 by Palestinian militants after they tunneled into the Jewish state and attacked an Israeli army outpost killing two soldiers.

Since then, he has been held incommunicado by Hamas, the movement that controls the Palestinian territory of Gaza. There have been ongoing attempts to broker a deal to release Shalit, and they have failed. The Israeli government and Hamas have not agreed on the numbers and terms for the release of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel in exchange for Shalit. In October 2009, Hamas released a tape of Shalit to prove he was still alive in exchange for the release of a number of Palestinian prisoners being held in Israeli jails.

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soundoff (240 Responses)
  1. Andreas Moser

    After more than 6 years in captivity, he would really deserve his release: http://andreasmoser.wordpress.com/2011/08/28/happy-25th-birthday-gilad-shalit/

    October 11, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Christopher Z.

      @hawaiidude

      How is the Talmud anti-christian? Judaism came before Christianity and in fact early Christianity was based on Judaism. If you think the Rabbi's had any contempt for Christian around 200-500 CE, that is probably because many Jews were persecuted, tortured and killed by a Christian Rome. Rabbi's had their flesh torn off them (Namely Rabbi Akiva), others were burned alive (read the story of the Ten Martyr's, which is about the 10 Rabbi's brutalized by the Christians, or google Unesanah Tokef and you may not like what you see) and their basic religion was outlawed.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      No it is not. Why are you referencing and outdated text from egypt which is totally ant-semetic instead of reading the actual recordings of rabbinic discussions pertaining to Jewish law? The Torah and the prophets along with the psalms are the "Old Testament" of the Christian bible. Why read an opiinion on a reference when the actual reference is available online?

      October 11, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Christopher Z, Excellent point. The word Christian is a terrible and rotten one with a few exceptions after people began to fight back against the Roman Church. Anyone who believes in Yoshua Ben Yoseph (Jesus) and know their history should not be using the name Jesus or Christian. They are words used by evil people to slaughter Jews, Believers in Yoshua, Muslims and non believers alike. Jewish Law is actually the fairest of all when it comes to treatment of strangers.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Christopher Z, those first two incidents would have happened before Rome was a christian empire. Plus the whole 10 matyrs thing seems to be legend rather than factual as they didnt all live at the same time.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  2. HAZEL

    Wasnt he Michael Jacksons doctor? I think I saw him on the Nancy Grace Show.

    October 11, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Elan

    Of course, CNN calls Hamas a "movement" instead of what they are – a terrorist organization. You will not find more biased reporting than CNN.

    October 11, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • bsitz

      Stfu

      October 11, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bimbo the Birthday Clown

      I think the most accurate description would be "criminal organization."

      October 11, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • M-Theory

      Ummm. isn't "terrorist organization" biased? How many countries in the world label them that? time to educate yourself.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abe

      Agreed. Hamas is a registered terror organization and it should be labled so. By the very least the word "militants" should be used.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elan

      How many "criminal groups" do you know of that murder thousands of innocent people and launch thousands of rockets into their Democratic neighbors' land? The answer is "none" because these are terrorist organizations, and Hamas is just one of many of them.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • hawaiiduude

      um... remember Bush saying the palestinians need to elect there own leader so they democratically elected hamas. Be careful what you wish for. Now we poopoo on the democratic process when we don't like it or when they stand up to illegal occupation.

      Stupid zionists are the real terrorists..

      October 11, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • mike

      So was the Irgun a terrorist organization?

      October 11, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abe

      @hawaiiduude

      What does the democratic process have to do with this? Does having popular support mean that Hamas are no longer terrorists?

      October 11, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elan

      The Irgun definitely committed terrorist acts – they did not represent the people that would later become the leaders of Israel. The Irgun was an isolated group. I don't see why that point is related or how that would change the fact that Hamas is a terrorist organization.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jake

      You should do more reading, then you wouldn't sound ignorant. While a faction of Hamas is definetly undertaking miltary attacks guerilla style agianst Isreal they parts are also a government , a poltical party and a red-crescent type organization that builds communities etc...

      October 11, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elan

      @Jake – I don't think I laughed harder than after reading your comment. Hamas BUILDS communities?! Hamas is the reason that Palestinians live in such derelict communities and that countless Israelis have been subjected to terror. Why does it matter that they govern over Gaza? They have a political wing and a military wing, and the military wing carries out their terror acts.

      This is the same group that praised Osama bin Laden after the US killed him and condemned his killing – you remember Osama, right? Responsible for the 9/11 attacks...other scattered acts of terror – maybe you don't remember him. Hamas is the same group that has claimed responsibility for thousands of terror acts – even they admit that they are a terrorist organization! Jeez – talk about closing your eyes to reality.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Saleem

      @ELAN – This is from wikipedia and explains what Jake is referring to: Israeli scholar Reuven Paz estimates that 90% of Hamas activities revolve around "social, welfare, cultural, and educational activities." Social services include running relief programs and funding schools, orphanages, mosques, healthcare clinics, soup kitchens, and sports leagues.

      In other words it is not all about terror plots.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      "Elan

      The Irgun definitely committed terrorist acts – they did not represent the people that would later become the leaders of Israel. "
      since when? they were given heroes burials when they died

      October 11, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abe

      @CR–

      Actually, Ben Gurion sunk their ship. You should so some research.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Yeah, Hawaiidude...how does Hamas winning an election make them less of a terrorist organization? It just makes them a terrorist organization that won an election.

      October 11, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      @Saleem...I don't care if 99% of their activities focus on social welfare. The bottom line is Hamas sends suicide bombers to ice cream parlors, night clubs, and hotels. That makes them a terrorist organization. Period. Paragraph. End of discussion.

      October 11, 2011 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Bimbo the Birthday Clown

    Hamas will once again recant and refuse to release him. Or they'll release his dead body. Those are the sorts of people they are.

    October 11, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • jane donaldson

      Well said.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • M-Theory

      Try thousands of political Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. THOUSANDS. Educate yourself.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elan

      @M-Theory: The Palestinians in Israeli prisons are not innocent – these prisoners are either terrorists, supporters of terror, or people trying to destroy Israel and its people by any means necessary. YOU should educate yourself.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • M-Theory

      @Elan – And that nice, pretty idea gets you a pat on the head from Netanyahu. I see that your ideas are solidified in your head – Again, all I can say is READ ANOTHER PERSPECTIVE. And educate yourself. Most American Media is biased toward governmental policies that may or may not be fair.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Oh yes M-Theory...you come across as someone who is completely open to having your preconceived notions challenged. I really can't stand it when people are so obnoxiously biased towards one side and then accuse people who disagree with them of being unwilling to open their minds. Look, there's nothing you can do or say to get me off the Israeli side of the argument, but at least I admit it.

      October 11, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Theend

    Prisoner of war Gilad Shalit needs to be released...The Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli jails need to be released. It's time to go home...

    October 11, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bimbo the Birthday Clown

      If Shalit is a prisoner of war, Hamas have violated, and continue to violate the Geneva Conventions. I don't think any reward should be given for that.

      October 11, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  6. jane donaldson

    I thought Israel did not bargin...oh well.

    October 11, 2011 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • jrh22

      I don't know where you got that idea. Israel regularly releases scores of Palestinian prisoners in exchange for one of its own. Interesting how a country that does that, and is willing to negotiate peace if the other side will simply acknowledge Israel's right to exist (just a minor issue) is regularly lambasted.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  7. hawaiiduude

    amen!

    October 11, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  8. hawaiiduude

    Shalit saw the truth and converted to Islam. Why would he want to go back?

    October 11, 2011 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Chris

    Hopefully Israel planted a tracking device into the people so they can go kill them and the thugs that got them released at their welcome home party

    October 11, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • theMuslimMallet

      so are you going on public record as condoning the murder of civilians? israel is pretty good at that anyway. i doubt they'd need a tracking device. so long as their american made bombs land in the general vicinity of mass of people. we learned that on the national new in lebanon 2006...

      October 11, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mike

    What the article didn't say is that Hamas wants hundreds of prisoners in exchange for Shalit, which is why the deal has failed a number of times.

    October 11, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • M-Theory

      What the article didn't say is that there are thousands of political Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. THOUSANDS OF POLITICAL PRISONERS.

      And of course millions of blind Americans who follow lockstep into propaganda.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      They are people who have been associated with terrorism

      October 11, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Gran

    "Where do you even come up with idiotic, stupid, racist and false ideas?"
    Excellent question mellow replies. Have you asked yourself yet?

    October 11, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  12. If Hamas is an "terrorist" org. as you say.

    ...what do you make of those who cut deals with terrorists?

    October 11, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pretty1

      A victim of blackmail?

      October 11, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  13. gambino

    Here's the evidence that THESE POOR PEOPLE ARE STRUGGLING FOR PEACE!
    Come on people...........
    Listen to them, begging, offering anything to have their own country.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KPSVpJ291c&feature=feedf

    They only took Gilad so they could talk to him, it wasn't in their minds to kidnap him, it was like they "vacationed" him from the army. Now Gilad doesn't have to go to army any more. Gilad had a great time. Gilad loves Gaza.

    October 11, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • yoav^^^

      that is the dumbest thing i have ever read!

      October 11, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      U must be sick in the head...... i dont know if you are stupid or playing stupid because pictures and a video have been released recently with gilad and he looked far from being vacationed...more like skinny and scared.....u prove exactly how much of a lying and fu cked mentality u and arabs have.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jake

    ypu should expand on your idea, I am not sure what you are talking about.

    October 11, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  15. But the Isralei MOSSAD...

    ...are god's little helpers. If you side-by-side compare the number of known atrocities comitted by the mossad with those Hamas is suspected of...it ain't even close: The MOSSAD are little waffen SSers. From illegally crossing international borders to track-down and assassinate suspected criminals to recruiting and arming 50,000 paid militia to fight for Gdahafi in Libya, these little devils have done it all. For more citations than you could read in a year, google or Youtube 'mossad exposed'.

    October 11, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Phillip Douglas, MD

      Quack.

      October 11, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pretty1

      You don't have any idea of what a citation IS, do you?

      October 11, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Danielle

      i know its horrible. Straight from the devil

      October 11, 2011 at 5:36 pm | Report abuse |
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