Home World News Mediators Look For A “Final Formula” For An Israel-Hamas Cease-Fire

Mediators Look For A “Final Formula” For An Israel-Hamas Cease-Fire

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U.S., Qatari, and Egyptian mediators are preparing a diplomatic push to bridge differences between Israel and Hamas on a ceasefire plan for Gaza. Hamas responded positively to a framework drawn up over a week ago by U.S. and Israeli spy chiefs at a meeting in Paris with the Egyptians and Qataris. The response was described as “positive” overall, and Egyptian security sources told Reuters that Hamas showed flexibility.

Sources close to the talks have said the truce would last at least 40 days, during which the militants would free civilians among the remaining hostages they hold. Further phases would follow, handing over soldiers and dead bodies of hostages in exchange for the release of Palestinians imprisoned in Israel.

The truce would also increase the flow of food and other aid to Gaza’s desperate civilians, who are facing hunger and dire shortages of basic supplies.

U.S. President Joe Biden said the Hamas response showed “some movement” toward a deal, but it was unclear if either Hamas or Israel were willing to soften their stated hardline positions to reach a truce agreement.

A Hamas official reiterated that the Palestinian Islamist movement would not allow any hostage releases without guarantees that the war would end and Israeli forces would leave Gaza. Saudi Arabia has told the U.S. that its position is that there will be no diplomatic relations with Israel unless an independent Palestinian state is recognized on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem and Israeli “aggression” in Gaza stops.

(Reuters)

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