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(JTA) — A failed Palestinian suicide bomber freed in the swap for Gilad Shalit told Gaza schoolchildren that she hoped they would follow in her footsteps.
“I hope you will walk the same path we took and, God willing, we will see some of you as martyrs," Wafa al-Biss told children who had gathered at her home Thursday, a day after she was released along with 477 Palestinian prisoners in the first part of a deal to secure the release of the captured Israeli soldier, Reuters reported.
Biss was serving a 12-year term for planning to blow herself up. She was arrested in 2005 when Israeli soldiers noticed she was walking strangely and found 22 pounds of explosives sewn into her underwear. A member of the al-Awsa Martyrs Brigades, an offshoot of the Fatah Party, Biss was traveling to a Beersheba hospital at the time for medical treatments.
Biss told Reuters that she had planned to blow herself up at the checkpoint but her detonator had malfunctioned.
The children reportedly chanted in response, "We will give souls and blood to redeem the prisoners. We will give souls and blood for you, Palestine."
Biss also dismissed Israel’s warnings against freed prisoners who return to combat.
"We will pursue our struggle and [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Nentanyahu] knows that," she said. "Arrests will not deter us from our strong battles and confrontation in the face of Zionist arrogance in the land of Palestine."