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Israel's War Cabinet To Convene Amid Expected Hamas Response To Cease-Fire Proposal

11.04.2024 15:12

Early in week, new cease fire proposal put forward by mediators, reports Times of Israel.

Israel's War Cabinet is scheduled to convene Thursday evening as the country awaits an official response from the Palestinian group Hamas on a new cease-fire proposal drafted by mediators, according to local media reports.

The Times of Israel news website reported Thursday that the Cabinet will meet at 7.30 p.m. local time (1630GMT).

The cease-fire and prisoner swap proposal was drafted by the US, together with Egyptian and Qatari mediators, added the report.

This comes in light of growing tension in anticipation of a retaliatory attack threatened by Iran, which has accused Israel of carrying out a strike on its consulate in the Syrian capital Damascus earlier this month.

On Monday, a Palestinian source familiar with the indirect talks said a new cease-fire proposal presented in Cairo recommended a cease-fire be implemented in three stages that include the conditional return of Palestinians to northern Gaza.

Under the proposal, 900 Palestinians will also be released from Israeli jails, including at least 100 who have been sentenced to long terms in prison, in exchange for the release of Israeli civilians held in Gaza, the source, who requested to remain anonymous, told Anadolu.

Commenting on the proposal, Mahmoud Mardawi, a Hamas official, told Anadolu that the proposal ignores their demand for a clear cease-fire, and fails to address Israel's withdrawal from Gaza.

Tel Aviv believes 134 Israelis are being held in Gaza, while Israel is holding not less than 9,100 Palestinians in its jails.

Indirect talks between Israel and Hamas are taking place in both Cairo and Qatar's capital Doha, aiming to reach a deal that includes a prisoner swap under which Israeli captives are released in exchange for Palestinians held in Israeli jails.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Palestinian territory since an Oct. 7 cross-border attack by Hamas which killed nearly 1,200 people.

Over 33,400 Palestinians have since been killed and nearly 76,000 others injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war, now in its 188th day, has pushed 85% of Gaza's population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in January issued an interim ruling that ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza. -

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