Hamas: Shalit not visited by doctors

Dec. 6, 2009 at 1:47 PM

GAZA, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- Mahmoud Zahar, described as a strongman for the Palestinian militant group Hamas, says doctors have not visited abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Reports from the BBC and the London newspaper Al-Hayyat indicated four French doctors visited the kidnapped soldier, who is expected to be released soon in a prisoner swap with Israel. But Zahar told the Israeli newspaper Haaretz Sunday there was no truth in the reports.

Haaretz said Zahar denied assertions that doctors accompanied a German mediator involved in Israel-Hamas negotiations for Shalit, who was abducted in a cross-border raid by Gaza militants more than three years ago.

Al-Hayyat reported the doctors went from the Gaza Strip from Cairo via the border crossing at Rafah after giving Shalit a full medical checkup.

Haaretz cited Arab media reports indicating Hamas leaders are trying to delay giving a final answer to Israel's prisoner swap offer for as long as possible.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
Boehner delays House vote for new speaker
NASA releases thousands of Apollo mission photos on Flickr
FDA approves new treatment for advanced lung cancer
Gay Vatican priest comes out day before Pope Francis begins synod on family issues
Scientists find roadmap that may lead to 'exercise pill'