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Liberal Judaism welcomes Gilad Shalit release

Liberal Judaism, 12th October 2011

Liberal Judaism has welcomed the release of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and praised the country’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Israel Radio reports that 1,000 Palestinian prisoners will be released in return for Gilad being freed, after Mr Netanyahu convened a special cabinet meeting to approve the prisoner swap with Hamas.

Liberal Judaism chief executive Rabbi Danny Rich said: "Like many parts of the Jewish community, Liberal Judaism spent a long time campaigning for this to happen.

"Obviously everybody is thrilled for Gilad Shalit himself and his family.

"For once, Benjamin Netanyahu has made a courageous decision. The release of 1,000 Palestinians will not be universally acclaimed, but in our view can only be welcomed."

The news was officially announced on Mr Netanyahu’s Twitter feed. The Prime Minister said: "We have concluded arduous negotiations with Hamas to release Gilad Shalit. He will be coming home in the next few days."

Campaigning still continues for the many other Israeli soldiers who are considered missing, including Majdi Halabi, who has not been seen since 2005, and Ron Arad, captured in 1986.

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