Recently, Hamas agreed to a three-phase ceasefire, but Israel found the terms diluted and thus unacceptable.

More on the News:

  • Israeli forces seized control of the vital Rafah border crossing in Gaza, the only passage between Egypt and southern Gaza. 
  • This move occurred the day after Hamas, the Palestinian militant group, agreed to a three-phased ceasefire and a prisoner-hostage swap. 
  • Ismail Haniyeh, the supreme leader of Hamas, approved a ceasefire proposal from Egypt and Qatar after extensive negotiations. 

The three-phase ceasefire proposal:

  • The negotiators involved in the discussions outlined a three-phase proposal, each lasting 42 days. 
  • In the initial phase, Hamas would release 33 hostages in exchange for Israel releasing Palestinians from its jails.
  • From day one, the entry of substantial quantities of humanitarian aid, relief materials, and fuel would be permitted.
  • Additionally, Israel would partially withdraw its troops from Gaza, allowing for unrestricted movement of Palestinians from south to north Gaza. 
  • Phase two was agreed upon to restore a “sustainable calm” in Gaza, involving the complete withdrawal of most Israeli troops. 
  • Additionally, Hamas would release Israeli reservists and some soldiers in exchange for Israel releasing Palestinians from jail. 
  • Finally, phase three would involve the exchange of bodies and the beginning of reconstruction efforts overseen by Qatar, Egypt, and the United Nations, ultimately leading to the lifting of the blockade in the Gaza Strip.

Why Israel rejected the proposal:

  • As per Israel’s official stance the ceasefire proposal accepted by Hamas deviated from the dialogue Israel had with the mediators and lacked significant elements from Israel’s demands. 
  • According to Israel, Hamas’ announcement appears to be a tactic to portray Israel as the party refusing a deal. 
  • Israel asserts that it would reject any permanent ceasefire and resume military operations, after the truce for hostage exchange, to achieve its objectives of returning hostages and dismantling Hamas’ military and governance capabilities.

What is next?

  • Israel intends to send working-level teams to engage in discussions with the mediators to explore the possibility of reaching an acceptable agreement.

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