Turkey mediating Hamas-Israel prisoner swap, senior Hamas official claims



The Hamas flag. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

(JNS.org) On the heels of the newly approved reconciliation deal between Israel and Turkey, a senior Hamas official on Wednesday said that Turkey has started mediating a prisoner swap between Hamas and Israel, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The prisoner swap would involve the return to Israel of the bodies of Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, two Israeli soldiers who were killed during the 2014 Gaza war.

“An important meeting between a big delegation of Hamas and Turkish intelligence took place in Turkey a few weeks ago to discuss a number of Palestinian issues related to the Gaza Strip, among them a possible prisoner swap,” the anonymous Hamas official said in an interview with the Saudi news website al-Khaleej Online.

“Turkey is currently acting as a mediator to conclude a prisoner exchange between Hamas and Israel. It is making important moves and holding important talks, and it went to great lengths in order to reach a good launch point that will enable the parties to conclude a deal,” said the official.

The Gaza-ruling Palestinian terror group’s official added, “Many obstacles prevent the parties from reaching an agreement, mainly Israel’s foot-dragging on giving Turkey official assurances regarding the prisoner swap.”

Posted on June 29, 2016 .