Al Jazeera reports: The al-Qasaam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, has denied capturing a missing Israeli soldier after Barack Obama, the US president, called for his release as a precondition for further ceasefire talks after the latest Gaza truce fell apart after just a few hours.
The Israeli army said Hadar Goldin, 23, went missing when its soldiers, two of whom were killed, were attacked while trying to destroy a Hamas tunnel in southern Gaza.
Obama’s comment at a White House news conference on Friday suggested the limited impact that diplomacy is having as the violence continues in the besieged strip.
“If they are serious about trying to resolve this situation, that soldier needs to be unconditionally released as soon as possible,” he said.
The al-Qasaam Brigades said: “We have no idea about where the Israeli soldier is or what is the situation.
“We lost contact with the group who made the suicide mission near Rafah after it was done.
“And we believe everyone in this group was killed by an Israeli airstrike including the Israeli soldier who the Israelis are talking about having disappeared.” [Continue reading…]