The Hamas government called upon the Palestinian resistance groups who were involved in the attack against the Israeli military post Sunday to keep the Israeli soldier captured during the operation alive.

Palestinian government spokesman Ghazi Hamad has urged the factions not to kill the soldier and to treat him well. Hamad issued his appeal in three languages: Arabic, English and Hebrew.

Hamad added in a press conference in Gaza Sunday afternoon that "as soon as we get information, we will announce it."

The escalation, Hamad said,  was the main cause of the current situation. He also said that calls were made to the Palestinian President and other parties in order to end this crisis.

Hamad added that this escalation will not harm the national dialogue which is about to reach an agreement.

Israeli military sources revealed the soldier’s identity on Sunday afternoon as 19-year-old Corporal Gilad Shalit from Mitzpe Hila in the Gallilee region near Haifa.

Israeli tanks and other military vehicles rolled into the southern areas in the Gaza Strip in bid to find and release the soldier.

In a special session Sunday night, the political-security cabinet unanimously agreed that the Israeli army is to begin preparing for military steps aimed at securing the release of the soldier abducted in the pre-dawn military attack that killed two other Israeli soldiers.

Arab diplomatic sources involved in efforts to release the soldier report that he is in good health, information which contradicts an earlier radio broadcast from Gaza.

A radio announcement claimed to be made by a Popular Resistance Committees spokesman said that the abducted soldier was wounded in his stomach and his condition is stable.