Arab Sources: Shalit Will Die If a Rescue is Attempted

Kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit is being held in a booby-trapped building, according to Arab sources in the Palestinian Authority.

Nissan Ratzlav-Katz,

Sources in the Palestinian Authority say that any Israeli attempt to rescue kidnapped IDF Corporal Gilad Shalit would lead to his death. According to the sources, cited by Arutz-7's Hagai Huberman, Shalit is being held in a booby-trapped building.

PA sources asserted that senior security officials know where Shalit is held. The PA sources further asserted that senior Fatah and Hamas terrorist leaders, as well as senior security officials from Egypt and Israel, know many details about the location where Shalit is being held. However, the PA sources added, the relevant security forces believe that an attempt to rescue him is likely to lead to his death.

In October 1994, an elite IDF unit attempted to rescue Cpl. Nachshon Waxman from Hamas kidnappers in Bir Naballah, north of Jerusalem. Waxman, who had been held captive for less than a week, was murdered by his captors when the rescue team stormed the building. Another IDF soldier, Captain Nir Poraz, fell in the ensuing gun battle.

PA sources also claimed that Hamas provided misleading information about its Israeli hostage to an Egyptian security delegation. This placed Egypt in an embarrassing situation during talks with Israel regarding efforts to secure Shalit's release, the sources said.

Cpl. Shalit was taken captive on June 25 2006, when PA terrorists infiltrated a military base east of the Gaza Strip, near the Kerem Shalom kibbutz and border crossing. Two soldiers were killed in the attack and four others wounded. Hamas, the multi-faction Popular Resistance Committees (made up of Fatah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists) and the Army of Islam all claimed responsibility for the attack. In the weeks immediately following Shalit's kidnapping, IDF sources stated that they had information he was being held somewhere in the Gaza Strip.

Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) claimed that he and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had reached a formula for Gilad Shalit's release. "It was accomplished through direct dialogue with the Egyptians and it is, in my estimation, acceptable to the kidnappers," Abbas said, adding that the discussions are moving quickly and "I hope that it will lead to a speedy release, as well."

More generally, Abu Mazen estimates that an agreement for the creation of a Palestinian state can be reached with Prime Minister Olmert within one year.

Ahead of a meeting with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, on a three-day visit to Israel, sources in the office of Defense Minister Amir Peretz said, "Shalit's release is a precondition for any diplomatic developments."



top