The family of a missing Israeli airman canceled a meeting with Ehud Olmert in protest of a likely prisoner swap with Hezbollah.
The Israeli prime minister was scheduled on Tuesday to visit relatives of Ron Arad, who bailed out over Lebanon in 1986 and disappeared into captivity, but the family called off the meeting.
Political sources said Olmert planned to inform the Arads of his government’s offer to free Samir Kuntar, a jailed Lebanese terrorist, as part of an upcoming deal with Hezbollah in which it would repatriate two Israeli soldiers abducted in 2006.
Kuntar was sentenced to life in prison for a 1979 cross-border attack in which three Israelis were killed, and has since become a Hezbollah hero.
The Arad family has long argued that Israel should insist the Lebanese militia provide information on the missing airman’s whereabouts as a condition for Kuntar’s release. Hezbollah says it knows nothing about Arad.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.