Captured soldiers taught Israel value of freedom
Official Palestinian Authority TV - July 7, 2008

 
Issa Karake, Head of the Prisoners' Committee in the Palestinian Parliament: 
     "The Israelis released Samir Kuntar only when their soldiers were taken captive. While there were negotiations for peace and talks and a genuine, serious peace process, they put up very grave racist conditions, leaving [the prisoners] in the prisons for many years. It would be better for the Israelis, and better for Israeli society, to release prisoners through a peace agreement that would bring about coexistence, through the establishment of two neighboring states. But they [Israelis] began to understand the value of freedom and the value of the detainees' issue [only] when their own soldiers were captured…The truth is that the freeing of Samir [Kuntar] breaks the Israeli veto, breaks the Israeli criteria, breaks the Israeli terms since they refused to release Samir [Kuntar] arguing that ‘his hands are covered in blood’… In all previous agreements that were signed between
Israel and the PLO, Israel always refused to release any Palestinian prisoner who had been accused of killing Israelis… Now there is a break, a true break in this Israeli taboo or veto."

Note: On July 16, 2008, Israel and Hezbollah concluded a prisoner exchange deal that released Lebanese terrorist Samir Kuntar from Israeli prison in exchange for the bodies of Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser, Israeli soldiers kidnapped and killed by Hezbollah in 2006. Kuntar was serving four life sentences for murdering 4 people, including four year-old girl Einat Haran.