Ceasefire talks between Hamas and mediators stall in Cairo

Israel-Gaza War Updates
2024-03-05 | 06:46
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Ceasefire talks between Hamas and mediators stall in Cairo
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Ceasefire talks between Hamas and mediators stall in Cairo

Ceasefire talks between Hamas and mediators broke up on Tuesday in Cairo with no breakthrough, with just days left to halt fighting in time for the start of Ramadan.

Senior Hamas official Bassem Naim told Reuters the militant group had presented its proposal for a ceasefire agreement to the mediators during two days of talks and was now waiting for a response from the Israelis, who stayed away from this round.

"(Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu doesn't want to reach an agreement, and the ball now is in the Americans' court" to press him for a deal, Naim said.

Israel has declined to comment publicly on the talks in Cairo.

A source told Reuters earlier that Israel was staying away because Hamas had rejected its demand to furnish a list of all hostages who are still alive. Naim said this was impossible without a ceasefire first, as hostages were scattered across the war zone and held by separate groups.

The Cairo talks had been billed as a final hurdle to reach the war's first extended ceasefire - a 40-day truce during which dozens of hostages would be freed, and aid would be pumped into Gaza to stave off a manmade famine ahead of Ramadan, which is due to begin at the start of next week.

Egyptian security sources said on Monday they were still in touch with the Israelis to allow the negotiations to continue without an Israeli delegation present.

Washington, which is both Israel's closest ally and a sponsor of the ceasefire talks, has said an Israeli-approved deal is already on the table, and it is up to Hamas to accept it. Hamas disputes this account as an attempt to deflect blame from Israel if the talks collapse with no deal.

The United States has also called on Israel to do more to alleviate the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza, where more than 30,000 people have been killed by Israel's assault, launched after Hamas attacks that killed 1,200 people in October.

Reuters
Israel Gaza War Updates 

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Ceasefire

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