Middle east

Leads to Agreement Ending Gaza War… Hamas “Abandons” Condition Hindering Negotiations

In what appears to be a breakthrough in talks aimed at reaching a ceasefire agreement in Gaza, a senior Hamas source confirmed on Saturday that the movement had accepted a U.S. proposal regarding hostage exchange.

The source clarified that Hamas agreed to the proposal to begin discussions on releasing Israeli hostages, including soldiers and civilians, within 16 days following the first phase of the agreement.

The source, who requested anonymity due to the confidentiality of the talks, told Reuters that “Hamas has agreed to abandon the demand for Israel to first commit to a permanent ceasefire before signing the agreement, and will allow this to be achieved through negotiations during an initial six-week phase.”

Leads to Agreement Ending the War A Palestinian official close to international mediation efforts said the proposal could lead to a framework agreement if Israel agreed to it, thus ending the 9-month-long war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

The Hamas source said, “The proposal ensures that mediators secure a temporary ceasefire agreement, deliver aid, and withdraw Israeli forces as long as indirect talks continue for the implementation of the agreement’s second phase.”

An Israeli negotiating team source, who requested anonymity, said, “There is currently a real opportunity to reach an agreement.”

He noted, “This marks a significant change from previous positions in the ongoing war for 9 months, when Israel said the conditions imposed by Hamas were unacceptable.”

A spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has not yet responded to a request for comment sent today.

His office said on Friday that talks would continue this week and confirmed that gaps between the two sides persisted.

Efforts have intensified to achieve a ceasefire and release prisoners in Gaza over the past few days, through intense diplomatic efforts between Washington, Israel, and Qatar, which leads mediation efforts from Doha, where Hamas‘ leadership abroad is based.

A source from the region said the U.S. administration is striving hard to reach an agreement before the November presidential elections.

Netanyahu said yesterday, Friday, that the head of the Mossad had returned from a preliminary meeting with mediators in Qatar and that negotiations would continue this week.

The conflict has claimed the lives of more than 38,000 Palestinians, according to health officials in Gaza. The war broke out after Hamas attacked towns in southern Israel on October 7, resulting in the deaths of 1,200 people and the holding of around 250 hostages, according to Israeli statistics.

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