“Kidnapped” Palestinian engineer: “I don’t know anything about Gilad Schalit;” PA envoy says Ukraine should act after “terrible act of piracy;” Barak: Any intel about Hamas is useful, arrest was justified.
March 31, 2011 (KATAKAMI.COM) — Noam Schalit on Thursday called on jailed Palestinian engineer Dirar Abu Sisi’s family to press Hamas to release captive soldier Gilad Schalit. The Jerusalem Post reported on Thursday.
In a telephone conversation with Abu Sisi’s wife Veronica, aired on Israel Radio, Schalit said that if a prisoner exchange deal is made in order to free his son, Abu Sisi would be released as well.
In response, Schalit was told that Abu Sisi is not connected to Hamas, and his family will do whatever they can to free him.
Dirar Abu Sisi claimed that he does not know anything about Gilad Schalit, shortly before a hearing in the Petah Tikva District Court on Thursday, in which his remand was extended by five days.
“I was kidnapped in the Ukraine and interrogated about Gilad Schalit,” Abu Sisi said. “I have no connection to him. I don’t know anything about Gilad Schalit.”
Abu Sisi went missing on a train traveling from Kharkov to Kiev on February 19 and later was revealed to be at the Shikma prison in Ashkelon. Foreign reports said that the engineer, who worked at Gaza’s central power plant, had information relating to captive soldier Gilad Schalit.
The Petah Tikva District Court is expected to release indict Abu Sisi within five days.
“I don’t know anything. I’m an engineer,” he said. He also said hello to his wife and children.
PA envoy encourages Ukraine to act
The Palestinian ambassador in Ukraine on Thursday denied that Abu Sisi was a member of Hamas.
Mohammed Al-Assad, the Palestinian envoy in Ukraine, told a news conference in Kiev on Thursday: “He was not a member of any organization”.
Describing Abu Sisi’s disappearance as a “terrible act of piracy”, Assad urged Ukrainian authorities to put pressure on Israel to ensure his safe return to Ukraine. Earlier Thursday, Defense Minister Ehud Barak defended Israel’s arrest of Dirar Abu Sisi.
In an interview with Israel Radio, Barak said that Abu Sisi has useful information about Hamas even if it does not concern Schalit, which justifies the arrest. (*)