Qatari negotiators are awaiting a final response from Hamas officials, who appear to have welcomed the plan
Israel has agreed to a ceasefire proposal that would halt its war with Hamas, Al Jazeera reported on Thursday, citing the Qatari Foreign Ministry. Hamas reportedly responded to the plan in “Positive atmosphere.”
The ceasefire plan was discussed in Paris over the weekend, with Qatari and Egyptian diplomats mediating between Israel and the Palestinian armed group. Delegations from West Jerusalem and Gaza left the French capital promising to study the proposal and negotiate further, and by Thursday evening, it appeared that the deal was within reach.
He added, “Israel agreed to the ceasefire proposal and we have an initial positive confirmation from Hamas.” The Qatari Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Thursday evening, according to Al Jazeera. “We are waiting for their response.” The spokesman added.
The proposed ceasefire will be implemented in three phases, according to a statement from Hamas shared with Reuters earlier this week. The first phase will see fighting halt for 40 days as Hamas hands over civilians, children and the elderly it is still holding. During this period, large-scale deliveries of food and medicine to Gaza will resume.
The next stages will see Hamas hand over captured Israeli soldiers and the bodies of Israeli soldiers, in exchange for more humanitarian aid and the release of Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons.
He added, “Military operations on both sides will stop during the three stages.” The militants said, adding that the number of Palestinian prisoners released would be open to negotiation.
This proposal falls short of the complete Israeli withdrawal from Gaza that Hamas initially demanded. However, as a step toward ending the war, it also threatens Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's plan to continue fighting until Israel achieves this. “Total victory” On the militants, as he promised on many occasions.
While hardliners within Netanyahu's government pressure him to reject any deal they see as too lenient toward Hamas, Israel faces international condemnation over its behavior in Gaza, and two of the Jewish state's strongest supporters – we And United kingdom – They suggested this week that they may soon recognize an independent Palestinian state. Such an outcome would be a political disaster for Netanyahu, who angered Washington and London last month when he explicitly rejected a two-state solution to the decades-long conflict with the Palestinians.
Hamas fighters attacked Israel on October 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking about 240 hostage. Israel responded by imposing a blockade on Gaza and launching waves of air strikes on the densely populated enclave. A ground operation followed three weeks later, and after nearly four months of fighting, more than 27,000 Palestinians were killed, two-thirds of them women and children, according to the Gaza Ministry of Health.
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