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Egypt and Israel close to agreement on prisoner swap deal

February 20, 2014 at 3:34 pm

High-level Israeli sources have revealed that a prisoner swap deal between Egypt and Israel just needs some fine tuning before it gets approval this week. According to Israel’s ambassador in Cairo, Yitzhak Levanon, negotiations between the two countries have reached the “final stages”.

A report by Radio Israel on Sunday said that Knesset Member Yisrael Hasson is in Egypt to put the finishing touches on the exchange agreement. It is unclear yet whether the agreement will include Israeli spy Ouda Tarabin as well as Ilan Grapel.

There is uncertainty about the number of prisoners to be included in any deal. One report claims that Israel intends to release 28 prisoners, including 3 children. Earlier, however, it was claimed that the exchange deal will involve Israel in releasing all 80 Egyptian prisoners held in its jails. Most have been convicted of entering Israel illegally.

The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that its ambassador to Tel Aviv, Yasser Reda, is negotiating with Israel on this issue.