Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh
Hamas leader Ismail HaniyehAavad Rahim Katib, Flash90

Hamas spokesman Hazam Kassam says rumors of an upcoming prisoner exchange with Israel are a mirage perpetrated by PM Netanyahu for improving his chances in the expected Knesset elections.

Kassam says Netanyahu is avoiding negotiations while "playing with the feelings of the Zionist captives held by Hamas."

The spokesman reacted to a report by Channel 11 News according to which, Hamas will provide Egyptian negotiators a list of "security prisoners" held by Israel whose release it will demand in exchange for the bodies of IDF soldiers killed during Operation Cast Lead and Israeli captives in Gaza.

MK Tzvi Hauser responded to the report saying that based on information he has had access to as head of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, the Hamas offer would be another disaster for the State of Israel. Hauser further said lessons needed to be learned from the Shalit deal in which most of the prisoners released returned to terrorist activity and urged the Prime Minister not to succumb to international pressure.