Sunday, 16 October 2011

Shalit: Tears of Joy and Tears of Sorrow

From YouTube:
Uploaded by iitvNews on Oct 15, 2011

Trading terrorists for Israeli hostages. Should Israelis celebrate or be upset?
A deal has been reached to trade more than a thousand terrorists for the release of abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. Shalit has been held by the Palestinian terrorist organization, Hamas for nearly 2,000 days. Hamas has denied Red Cross access to Shalit, in violation of International Law. Israelis must deal with the promise by Hamas leaders that the released terrorists will return to murder Israelis. Should Israel have agreed to this deal?

A look at some of the 1,027 Palestinian prisoners to be released in a swap between Israel and Hamas:
Nasser Yateima, 34, from the West Bank town of Tulkarem
Serving 29 life terms for his role in an April 2002 suicide bombing at an Israeli hotel on Passover eve that killed 30 people and triggered Israel's reoccupation of the West Bank, a military operation called "Defensive Shield." To be exiled.
Walid Abdel-Hadi, 31, from Ramallah
Serving 36 life terms for his role in several attacks, including a March 2002 suicide bombing in a Jerusalem cafe that killed 11 people. To be exiled.
Amna Muna, 35, from Jerusalem
Serving life term since 2001 for luring an Israeli teenage boy over the Internet to the West Bank, where he was killed by waiting militants. Her mother Samira says it's not clear yet if Amna will be sent to Gaza or abroad. Samira insists that her daughter never intended for her victim to be killed.
Ahlam Tamimi, 31, serving 16 life sentences for her role in a suicide bombing, including taking the assailant to the Sbarro franchise in Jerusalem where he killed 16 people in 2001. To be deported to Jordan. Started out as a Fatah activist, but switched allegiance to the Islamic militant Hamas.
Nizar Tamimi, 38, from the West Bank town of Ramallah.
Serving a life term for his role in the 1993 kidnapping and killing of an Israeli settler.
Mohammed Abu Khoussa, 72, from Gaza
In prison since 1976, formerly affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a PLO faction. Serving life term for heading an armed cell that killed several Israeli soldiers in the 1970s.
Abdel Hadi Ghneim, 46, from Gaza
Arrested on July 6, 1989, the day he grabbed the steering wheel of an Israeli bus and sent it plunging into a ravine near Jerusalem. Serving 16 life sentences for the attack that killed 16 people, including two Canadians and an American. His son Thaer, 22, born just a day before the attack, says his father acted out of anger over the Israeli crackdown on the first Palestinian uprising, particularly a shooting that paralyzed a friend.
Fathi Barghouti, 57, and Nael Barghouti, 54, cousins from the West Bank village of Kobar
Arrested in 1978 for membership in an armed cell that kidnapped and killed an Israeli man. Each serving a life term. In recent years, Fathi shared a cell with his son Shadi, who was arrested in 2002 and is serving 27 years for involvement in an armed group. Fathi's wife, 51-year-old Samira, says that she fears the moment "when Fahri walks out and leaves behind Shadi in the same cell."
Yehiye al-Sinwar, 49, from the Khan Younis refugee camp in Gaza
A leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, a forerunner of Hamas, since the 1980s, and a founder of the Hamas military wing. In prison since 1988, serving four life terms, including his role as mastermind of the abduction and killing of two Israeli soldiers.
Mohammed Youssef al-Sharatha, 54, from the Jebaliya refugee camp in Gaza
A leader of a Hamas commando unit. Arrested in 1989, serving three life terms for his role in the abduction and killing of two Israeli soldiers.
Jihad Yaghmur, 44, from Jerusalem.
Arrested in 1994 for his role in the capture of an Israeli soldier, Nahshon Waxman, who was killed during an Israeli rescue attempt. Serving life term. To be exiled.

Israel moves Palestinian swap prisoners

By Middle East Correspondent
Updated October 17, 2011 08:15:33
Israeli prison guards have begun transferring nearly 500 Palestinian prisoners as part of a deal to secure the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
A total of 477 Palestinians will be freed tomorrow in the first stage of an agreement to secure the freedom of Sergeant Shalit, who was captured by Palestinian militants from Gaza in 2006.
Sgt Shalit is expected to be taken to a border crossing in Gaza's south and flown north to a military base, where he will be reunited with his family.
The prisoners will be taken by bus to various destinations - most to their homes in Gaza and the West Bank.
About 40 are to be exiled to other countries and Israeli media has speculated they may go to Turkey or Egypt.
Israel has agreed to release another 550 Palestinian prisoners in a few weeks' time after Sgt Shalit is safely freed.
Those on the release roster included Palestinians jailed for attacks in which dozens of Israelis were killed. At least five prisoners have been in jail since their teens.
Fakri Barghouti is the longest serving Palestinian prisoner in an Israeli jail.
He was arrested in 1978 and found guilty of stabbing an Israeli soldier to death and sentenced to life in prison.
His wife Samira Barghouti said she had wondered if she would ever see him outside jail again.
"I have dreamed about this moment for a long time," she said.
"There were several prisoner swaps that didn't include him. I was waiting for the deal over Gilad Shalit to be concluded. Thank God, finally my husband is among them."
The prisoner swap deal has strong support in Israel but 40 Israeli families who have lost relatives in Palestinian attacks have lodged a petition with the Israeli Supreme Court to stop the prisoner exchange from going ahead.
Many, like this man, say Israel can't afford the cost of Gilad Shalit's freedom.
"There was about 2,000 people killed and now they're going to let these terrorists go out," said one man.
"What's going to happen? They're going to kill another 2,000, 3,000 people."
All similar court appeals have previously failed.

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