Remember Cpt. Shalit?
An adviser to Mr Abbas told the Guardian that all Palestinian politicians were united on the need to free the Israeli soldier and stop all violence in Gaza, but the obstacles were the Israeli government and the Hamas leadership in Damascus.
"The problem is that both Islamic Jihad and Hamas have to seek the advice of their political bureaux in Damascus and we are waiting for their response," he said.
...the Gaza crisis was quickly overshadowed by Hizbullah's attack on Israel's northern border. The depth of the crisis in Lebanon has reduced the pressure on Gaza and made Israel more amenable to a solution, according to Mr Abbas's aide. Earlier this month, Yuval Diskin, the head of Israel's internal security agency, Shin Bet, met Mr Abbas in Jordan.
According to the aide, Israel is willing to release Palestinian prisoners in return for Cpl Shalit but insists the exchange will not be simultaneous and its release of prisoners will be described as a "goodwill gesture" and not as a direct exchange
This has been accepted by Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas prime minister, and the Hamas political movement but not by Khaled Meshal, the Hamas leader in Damascus. Mr Meshal wields considerable power because he controls funds donated by Iran, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states. The military wing of Hamas, which is holding Cpl Shalit, is particularly dependent on the money from Mr Meshal.
Mr Meshal is susceptible to pressure from his host, Syria. "It appears that Syria's main concern is the investigation into the murder of the Lebanese prime minister, Rafiq Hariri. If Syria could be assured that the investigation does not continue, there are indications that Syria would be willing to be helpful on many issues, not just the release of Israeli soldiers," Mr Abbas's aide said.
Thanks to Kel for posting this first, read the full article HERE.