Captured Israeli Solder to Be Freed in Prisoner Deal

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Five years after he was taken prisoner by Hamas, an Israeli soldier could be home soon.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday Sgt. Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier held by the terror group since 2006, will be returning home in 'coming days.'

Netanyahu convened his cabinet to approve a prisoner swap deal that would bring home the captured soldier.

Israel radio said Israel would exchange 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, including terrorists, for Shalit, though the number of prisoners to be released in the deal has not been confirmed.

In a televised address, the prime minister said he got "the best deal we could get" given the turmoil in the region.

A senior Hamas official in Cairo confirmed the deal. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media.

Shalit was captured in a cross-border raid in 2006 and taken to the Gaza strip. Repeated attempts to reach a deal with Hamas have broken down.

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