Hamas: 6 escapees a priority in any prisoner swap

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Israeli security forces take a Palestinian inmate into custody, one of the 6 escapees from Gilboa prison, after being arrested in Umm al-Ghanam town on September 11, 2021 [Israeli Police / Anadolu Agency]

Member of Hamas Political Bureau Khalil Al-Hayya announced on Friday that the six Palestinians who escaped from Gilboa Prison would be the priority in any potential prisoner swap.

Addressing worshippers at Friday prayer organised in front of the office of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza, Al-Hayya stressed: “We will keep our promise.”

He shared that his movement: “Is working hard to liberate all the Palestinian prisoners. This is a debt that we have sought to pay for a long time.”

Al-Hayya expressed that the: “Freedom Tunnel Operation is a slap to all those who bet on peace and reconciliation with the Israeli occupation,” adding: “This operation tells the occupation that we are not numbers, but lions preparing for the day of freedom.”

Meanwhile, he hailed the residents of Jenin and the Palestinian resistance that formed a joint committee for the acting resistance groups, including Al-Aqsa Brigades, Al-Quds Brigades and Al-Qassam Brigades. “This proves that all the weapons in the hands of the Palestinians are one weapon,” he added.

He also conveyed that his movement had sent a message to all the mediators that: “The issue of the prisoners is not easy and the Palestinian resistance will not tolerate aggression on them,” adding that this pushed the Israeli occupation to “regain the rights of the prisoners inside jails.”

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