Sign of life from Israeli soldier held in Gaza

Monday, June 25, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

Palestinian terrorists on Monday released a voice recording of an Israeli soldier they have been holding in the Gaza Strip for the past year. It was the first sign of life from Corporal Gilad Shalit since he was abducted on June 25, 2006.

In the recording, which was replayed repeatedly on all Israeli television networks, Shalit calmly stated that he was being treated well, but that his health was not good and that he required medical care.

Shalit went on to accuse the government of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of not truly caring about his captivity due to its unwillingness to meet Palestinian demands for his release. The young soldier compared his own captivity to the incarceration of thousands of Palestinian terrorists by Israel, raising fears that he had either been forcibly coerced or brainwashed by those holding him.

Soon after the tape was released, Hamas spokesmen appeared on Israeli television demanding that Israel respond to the positive sign of life by reopening negotiations to trade Shalit for as many as 1,500 jailed Palestinians, including leading terrorist commanders.

The group that snatched Shalit last year also killed two members of his tank crew in an act of cross-border aggression that only brought further suffering to the Palestinians of Gaza.

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