Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Hamas delegation to visit Cairo this week for truce talks, temporary ceasefire likely


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Shillong, March 13: Bringing an end to the deadlock in ceasefire talks, a delegation of senior Hamas leaders led by its political bureau head, Ismail Haniyeh is set to visit Cairo this week for mediatory talks.

Sources in the Israel Defence Ministry told IANS that the talks would be held at the mediation of the special envoy of US President Joe Biden, Brett McGurk, who will visit Cairo this week.

According to the sources, Hamas leasership has agreed to release, women, elderly and wounded Israeli hostages in its custody in exchange for the Palestinian prisoners kept in Israeli jails.

Qatar’s Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed Bin Al-Thani and Egyptian Intelligence Head Major General Abbas Kamel will also be part of the mediatory talks in Cairo.

However, the Israel Defense Ministry source did not give the exact date of the truce talks but instead revealed that the talks will take place this week itself.

US President Joe Biden had announced earlier that ceasefire would commence before the holy Ramadan month. While Ramadan month has begun, there was no progress in ceasefire talks and the sudden breakthrough has given hopes for an imminent ceasefire.

In the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas that began on October 7, 2023, more than 31,000 Palestinians, including a large number of women and children have lost their lives.

Around 241 Israeli soldiers were killed in addition to the 1,200 people killed in southern Israel on October 7 last year when Hamas militants swarmed into Kibbutz Beeri, Kfar Aza and Reim festival areas of southern Israel.

Since the start of the war, there was a one-week ceasefire from November 24 to December 1, which saw the release of 105 Israeli hostages in exchange of 324 Palestinian prisoners kept in Israeli prisons. (IANS)


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