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First images of Gilad Shalit released; IDF confirms he is alive and well

Swap deal between the Gaza-ruling militant group and Israel briefly stalled after Palestinian female prisoners refused to be deported into Gaza Strip.

by Anshel Pfeffer, Yaniv Kubovich and Haaretz

October 18, 2011 | 3:31 am

Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is escorted, after his release, in an unknown location in Egypt on Oct. 18. Photo by REUTERS/Egyptian TV

Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is escorted, after his release, in an unknown location in Egypt on Oct. 18. Photo by REUTERS/Egyptian TV

An Israel Defense Forces official confirmed Tuesday that Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was identified at the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt and is “alive and well.”

Earlier Hamas said Israel completed the transfer into Egypt of Palestinian prisoners due to be deported overseas and into the Gaza Strip, in a clear sign that a deal geared at securing the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was back on track.

The Hamas report came following a brief stall in the prisoner exchange deal after IDF officials said two female Palestinian prisoners refused to be deported into the Gaza Strip.

One of the prisoners resisting deportation is reportedly Amna Muna, who was jailed for life in 2003 for luring 16-year-old Israeli Ofir Rahum from Ashkelon to Ramallah, where he was shot dead by Fatah terrorists.

Read more at Haaretz.com.

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