Deposed Hamas PM says no progress on Shalit’s release

By Xinhua,

Gaza : Deposed Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haneya Monday denied any progress on the release of an Israeli soldier held hostage by his movement for two years.

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“There is no thing new regarding Gilad Shalit and we can’t speak about it,” Haneya told reporters in Gaza. His remarks were made following reports that former U.S. President Jimmy Carter was trying to achieve a breakthrough on Shalit’s issue.

Haneya said Hamas was interested in ending Shalit’s issue, “but this is subject to the Israeli stance and its complying with the Palestinian demands.”

Shalit was captured by three militant groups led by Hamas in 2006. Hamas demands Israel free 1,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, including all the female, children and elderly detainees, in exchange for the corporal.

Haneya also disclosed that Egypt which brokered a truce between Palestinian militants led by Hamas and Israel, is still following up on this case.

On Wednesday, Hamas announced it froze the talks to protest the continuation of Gaza blockade despite the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.

Hamas accuses Israel of not properly lifting the sanctions on the Hamas-controlled Gaza despite Palestinian commitment to the ceasefire which succeeded in restoring sort of calm in and around Gaza.