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Israel does not approve ceasefire proposals – negotiations continue

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An Israeli tank photographed with the Gaza Strip as background. Hamas stated on Monday that it had approved a proposal for a ceasefire negotiated by Egypt and Qatar, but Israel has rejected the proposal. Photo: Tsafrir Abayov / AP / NTB

Of NTB | 07.05.2024 00:44:08

Policy: The ceasefire proposal accepted by Hamas does not meet Israel’s demands, according to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He will nevertheless send off a new negotiating delegation.

The delegation will meet with negotiators and try to reach an acceptable agreement, according to a statement from Netanyahu’s office.

However, an Israeli source was quick to say that the ceasefire proposal was not acceptable to Israel. The source believed the proposal came across as an attempt to make it look like Israel is refusing to agree to an agreement.

Qatar is sending a delegation to Egypt’s capital Cairo on Tuesday to continue the ceasefire negotiations, the country’s foreign ministry said. The hope is that “the talks will culminate in agreement on an immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip”.

In a statement, the ministry describes Hamas’ response to the negotiated proposal as “positive”.

On Monday evening, new, intense Israeli airstrikes were reported against Rafah, and the IDF confirmed that they are carrying out strikes which they say are aimed at Hamas targets in the east of the city. AFP cites a local hospital as saying at least five people have been killed.

Both the UN and the US have warned strongly against an Israeli ground invasion in Rafah and stressed that it will lead to enormous civilian suffering for the Palestinian civilian population. UN bodies warned last Friday that an invasion of Gaza would lead to a bloodbath and put hundreds of thousands of Palestinian civilians in danger.

Over a million Palestinians have sought refuge in Rafah as a result of the war that has raged in the Gaza Strip since October last year.

Earlier on Monday, Hamas stated that it had agreed to a proposal negotiated by Qatar and Egypt. Jubilation erupted in the streets of the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah when the news became known. Here, fears have spread in recent days that an Israeli ground invasion could be imminent.

Israel has made it clear that it is going ahead with plans for a ground invasion of Rafah, despite Hamas’ declaration that it will accept the ceasefire proposal.

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