Friday, November 27, 2009

FOX news report: Shalit Deal Nearly Complete

(FOXnews).Sources close to officials negotiating for the release of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit tell Fox News that a deal to secure his freedom will likely be concluded next week, when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returns from a trip to Germany.

A major remaining sticking point is disagreement over where to deport Palestinian prisoners from East Jerusalem.

Egyptian sources say that Hamas still needs to come back to Israel with answers on a handful of issues. But an official response is not expected until after the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice), which begins Friday and ends Monday.

Still, the latest developments indicate that the two sides have narrowed their differences.

"What we are seeing now is the end game," said one source close to the negotiations, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak on the record.

Both sides, however, also expressed caution that a final agreement is very close, but has not yet been agreed upon.