Hamas described UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s call for the release of Israeli prisoners of war held in the Gaza Strip as “biased remarks”.
In a statement, the movement’s spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri described Ban’s remarks as “disgusting”.
“Ban Ki-moon is merely a tool to serve Israeli interests, and the international community should work to end the tragedy of 6,000 Palestinians who were kidnapped and held in Israeli jails before talking about the Israeli soldiers who are killers,” he said.
The UN secretary-general had called on all Gaza residents with information about the whereabouts of the captives to come forward.
Earlier this month, the Israeli army announced that two Israeli citizens went missing in the Gaza Strip during its offensive against the region last summer, in addition to the two soldiers which they say are being held by Hamas’s military wing the Al-Qassam Brigades.
For its part, Hamas has refused to discuss the issue of prisoners or war until Palestinian prisoners released during the Shalit deal in 2011, and subsequently rearrested by Israel, are released.