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Israel rejects prisoner swap of ailing detainees

A view of the exhibition held by Hamas to draw attention to situations of detainees in Israeli jails within the 10th anniversary of the prisoner swap in 2011, at the Unknown Soldier Monument in Gaza City, Gaza on October 13, 2021 [Ali Jadallah / Anadolu Agency]
A view of the exhibition held by Hamas to draw attention to situations of detainees in Israeli jails within the 10th anniversary of the prisoner swap in 2011, at the Unknown Soldier Monument in Gaza City, Gaza on October 13, 2021 [Ali Jadallah / Anadolu Agency]

The heads of Israeli current coalition government have rejected a prisoner swap with Palestinian factions of detainees who are suffering medical ailments, Ynet News reported yesterday.

Sources reported by the news site said that Bennett and Lapid decided not to agree to a "partial deal" proposed by Palestinian factions.

According to the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen TV, Hamas offered to exchange Israeli prisoner of war Hisham Al-Sayed for sick Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons.

The Lebanese TV channel claimed that Hamas told Egyptian negotiators visiting Gaza that they had temporarily dropped their demand that the Israeli occupation must free prisoners with long sentences and those arrested after being released in the prisoner swap deal reached in 2011.

Reports came one day after the Al-Qassam Brigades released a video of Al-Sayed lying in a bed strapped to a ventilator, pointing out that he suffered from a sudden deterioration in his health.

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Sources told Ynet News that Israel wants the agreement to include Avera Mengistu, as well as the bodies of soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, whom Israel believes were killed during its offensive on Gaza in 2014.

While Israel claims that Al-Sayed was not a soldier, Palestinian factions insists he is and it showed his ID in the video to prove that.

"Hisham al-Sayed is not a soldier, but a mentally ill Israeli citizen who crossed the border into the Gaza Strip," an Israeli statement reported by Ynet News said.

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