Shalit prisoner exchange deal to take place on Tuesday
In the UK and international press today, Reuters notes that the prisoner exchange deal involving Gilad Shalit will take place in the Sinai Peninsula next week on Tuesday. The Independent notes that most Israelis are celebrating the prisoner exchange deal, while critics evaluate the cost of releasing over 1,000 Palestinian prisoners. The Times notes that Israeli families of the victims of terrorist attacks will mount legal challenges against the release of Palestinian prisoners who were directly involved in attacks on Israel. In other news, most papers report that President Barack Obama said that Iran could face the toughest sanctions yet over accusations that Tehran was involved in an assassination attempt on the Saudi ambassador to the US.
In the Israeli press today, the front pages all focus on the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal. The papers report that IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz visited the parents of Gilad Shalit last night and told them that their son will return to Israel on Tuesday. The papers also look behind the scenes of the prisoner exchange deal and what occurred during negotiations. The front page of Haaretz notes that Israel is planning to build new homes in East Jerusalem. Haaretz and Jerusalem Post note that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu phoned the Egyptian military leader and thanked Cairo for its role in mediating the prisoner exchange deal. All papers also note that the memorial for Yitzhak Rabin in Tel Aviv was vandalised last night. The words “Price Tag” and “Free Yigal Amir” were spray-painted on it. Eyewitnesses reported that Tel Aviv municipal guards arrested the perpetrator. A Tel Aviv City official said that the suspect is a man whose parents were killed in a terrorist attack.