Israeli DM says not to accept any price for kidnapped soldier's release
Israel is trying hard to bring back kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit, but would not accept any price for his release, local daily Ha'aretz quoted Defense Minister Ehud Barak as saying on Tuesday, reported Xinhua.
"We are doing everything possible to bring Shalit home, but not at every price. I urge everyone who wants 'any price' to consider that option through," Barak was quoted as saying to a group of high school students on their first day of the new school term.
"The negotiations are harsh and sometimes cruel. We must also take into account future instances and opportunities," he added, while citing future challenges to urge his compatriots to keep cool and resilience.
Also on Tuesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told another group of students that his government will bring Shalit back as soon as possible.
Since Shalit was abducted by Palestinian militants into the Gaza Strip in 2006, efforts to secure his freedom have so far failed to bear any fruits, yet momentum in this regard is seemingly gathering during the past few weeks.
German mediators have reportedly presented the Gaza-ruling Hamas movement with a new proposal, and Hamas officials is expected in Cairo this week to discuss the deal. Any possible agreement would likely see Israel free at least hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in exchange for Shalit's return.