Red Cross discussing role in Shalit exchange with Hamas, Israel

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 13, 2011 9:40 AM
Red Cross discussing role in Shalit exchange with Hamas, Israel

GENEVA (Reuters) - The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has offered to play a neutral intermediary role in the exchange of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit for Palestinian prisoners and is in talks with both Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers, an ICRC spokesman said on Thursday.

"We are talking to both sides about our offer. We have offered our services as a neutral intermediary to both sides," ICRC spokesman Marcal Izard told Reuters in response to an inquiry.

Israel and Hamas Islamist rulers have reached a deal to swap more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners for Shalit, a 25-year-old held captive in Gaza since 2006.

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Angus MacSwan)