No prisoner swap after Israeli attacks: Meshaal

DAMASCUS – Hamas said on Wednesday that Israeli attacks that killed more than 20 Palestinians in the last two days have dashed prospects for a prisoners’ exchange deal involving an Israeli soldier held by the group.

“I tell the … enemy. What you’re committing will deprive you of anything you’re betting on. There will be no exchange involving Gilad Shalit, no calm or nothing of this sort,” Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal said in the Syrian capital, referring to the Israeli soldier captured in 2006.

“Palestinian blood being spilt by you will be your curse. It will not bring you security. It will not prolong the existence of your entity,” Meshaal told a news conference.

Egypt has been trying to mediate a deal to release Shalit in exchange for Palestinians held by Israel. Hamas has been demanding the release of 1,400 out of more than 10,000 Palestinians in Israeli jails in exchange for Shalit.

Israel on Tuesday killed at least 18 Palestinians in Gaza, most of them Hamas members. This was the highest number of Palestinians killed by the Jewish state in a single day since late 2006. Four Palestinians were killed on Wednesday.

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