Israelis demonstrate for the release of captured soldier Gilad Shalit in Jerusalem

Israeli security forces seized 12 senior Hamas leaders before dawn on Thursday, after the failure to secure the release of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit during this week’s negotiations in Cairo.

Arrests have been made in the West Bank following the collapse of indirect negotiations between Israel and Hamas this week

Israeli soldiers arrested senior members of Hamas, after they had failed to reach agreement on an Egyptian brokered prisoner swap.

Among those arrested are four Hamas members of the Palestinian Legislative Council and a university professor, all of whom belong to the administrative branch of Hamas.

Hamas officials have said Israel is punishing the group for the broken down talks, which Israel had hoped would lead to the release of Gilad Shalit, a soldier seized by Palestinian militants in 2006.

Shalit is being held somewhere in the Gaza Strip.

The talks faltered when Israel refused to hand over some of the Palestinian prisoners that Hamas had requested on a release list.

Some of the requested prisoners had been jailed over terror attacks that had killed Israeli civilians.

A rally is to be held in Jerusalem on Saturday to mark 1000 days since Gilad Shalit’s abduction.

Source: AFP