Hamas accepts ceasefire deal – Al Jazeera — RT World News

The militants reportedly agreed to a truce before the Israeli invasion of Rafah

A Hamas spokesman told Al Jazeera on Monday that Hamas had accepted the ceasefire proposal presented by Egyptian and Qatari mediators. The announcement came shortly after Israel ordered the evacuation of the city of Rafah ahead of a long-planned attack.

Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh made phone calls with Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani and Egyptian Intelligence Minister Abbas Kamel, in which he informed them. “Hamas approved its proposal regarding a ceasefire agreement” The group said in a statement to Al Jazeera.

Details of the proposal have not yet been announced. Hamas previously demanded that any ceasefire be permanent and include the withdrawal of all Israeli forces from the besieged Palestinian enclave. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has refused to issue such guarantees, warning last week that Israel will not allow Hamas to remain in power in Gaza, and that it will invade Rafah with or without a ceasefire agreement.

But Netanyahu said Israel was prepared for a temporary halt to the fighting to allow the exchange of Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners.

The Israeli Prime Minister had threatened several months ago to launch a ground invasion into the city of Rafah, a city located in the southern Gaza Strip and currently inhabited by about 1.4 million Palestinians displaced from other parts of the Strip. Despite condemnation from the United States, the European Union and dozens of other countries, the Israeli army ordered civilians to leave Rafah on Monday, warning that it would bomb the city with air strikes. “maximum power” Shortly thereafter.

It is not clear whether the threat of invasion influenced Hamas' decision to accept the ceasefire proposal. Despite Netanyahu's insistence on entering Rafah, other Israeli officials have indicated that Hamas could avoid an invasion by agreeing to the temporary truce announced by Israel.

It is also unclear whether the agreement proposed by Egypt and Qatar has the support of Israel. An unnamed Israeli official told Reuters that Hamas had agreed to “relaxed” A copy of the initial West Jerusalem offer, which included “far-reaching” conclusions that Israel would not support.

Israel declared war on Hamas after Palestinian militants launched a surprise attack on October 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking about 250 hostages to Gaza. The death toll as a result of Israeli retaliation in the Gaza Strip is approaching 35,000 people as of Monday, according to Palestinian health authorities.

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