Qatari Delegation to Resume Talks in Cairo for Gaza Ceasefire

Qatari Delegation to Resume Talks in Cairo for Gaza Ceasefire

A Palestinian child sits among the rubble of homes destroyed in an Israeli strike in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. (File photo: Reuters)

A delegation from Qatar will head to the Egyptian capital Cairo on Tuesday morning to resume indirect talks between Hamas and Israel on a ceasefire in Gaza and hostage swap deal, reported Anadolu Agency.

“The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) sent on Monday to the mediators a response to their proposals that they put forward to Israel and the movement regarding the truce,” Majed bin Mohammed Al-Ansari, the official spokesperson for the Qatari Foreign Ministry, said in a statement.

The ministry deemed Hamas’s response as “positive.”

Al-Ansari stressed “the State of Qatar’s hope that the talks will culminate in reaching an agreement for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip and the exchange of prisoners and detainees and the sustainable flow of humanitarian aid into all areas of the (Gaza) Strip.”

The Palestinian resistance group Hamas said Monday that it has agreed to a Qatari-Egyptian proposed cease-fire in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh conveyed his group’s approval of the proposal of the two countries during phone calls with Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani and Egyptian intelligence chief Abbas Kamel, the group added in a statement.

The approval came in the wake of Israeli forces issuing evacuation orders for Palestinians in eastern neighborhoods of the city of Rafah in southern Gaza, a step widely seen as a prelude to starting Israel's long-threatened attack on the city, home to some 1.5 million Palestinians seeking refuge from the war.

An Israeli official involved in the Gaza cease-fire talks said Tel Aviv has received Hamas’ response and will study it, according to the Israeli public broadcaster KAN.

Egypt’s state-run Al-Qahera News channel, citing a well-placed source, said early Monday that a Hamas delegation would arrive in Cairo early Tuesday to continue Gaza cease-fire talks.

The Hamas delegation left the Egyptian capital on Sunday after a two-day round of cease-fire talks for consultations with the group’s leadership.

Israel has pounded the Gaza Strip in retaliation for a cross-border attack led by Hamas, which killed about 1,200 people. More than 34,700 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza, the vast majority of whom have been women and children, and 78,100 others injured, according to Palestinian health authorities.

Nearly seven months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins, pushing 85% of the enclave’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January said it is "plausible" that Israel is committing genocide in Gaza, and ordered Tel Aviv to stop such acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

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