Hamas has hinted that it may kidnap more IDF soldiers if a deal for Gilad Shalit is not sealed.
According to Ha’aretz, one of Hamas’s leaders abroad, Osama Hamdan, has said that although negotiations were continuing with German mediator Gerhard Conrad, the organisation would not rule out further kidnappings if no agreement could be reached with the Israelis.
Israel and Hamas are said to be hammering out a deal involving 450 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for the 23-year-old kidnapped soldier.
Israel is demanding the exile of 120 of the prisoners whom they will release, a condition which Hamas so far has refused to accept.
It is likely that Hamas will turn down the current offer from Israel in the hope of reducing the number of prisoners to be exiled and to add further names to the list, including Fatah’s Marwan Barghouti.