Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Israeli, Hamas delegations to reach Cairo today for talks


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Shillong, April 29: A delegation of senior Israeli officials led by Mossad Chief David Barnea will reach Cairo on Monday for indirect mediatory talks with Hamas.

The Hamas delegation will also reach Cairo on Monday with Qatar and Egypt taking the lead for the mediation regarding the release of hostages and temporary ceasefire talks in the ongoing war between Hamas and Israel.

Hamas, according to Arab media have in principle agreed to the release of a minimum of 33 hostages. The hostages include women, old people, sick and men above the age of fifty. Hamas has demanded the release of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. This includes those arrested with grave offences, including murder.

Sources in Israel’s defence ministry told IANS that they have communicated to the mediators that the IDF would not be withdrawn from the Gaza Strip.

Israel, it may be recalled, has already called upon the Hamas side not to drag its feet from the release of hostages and has stated that if Hamas backs out from the deal then the Rafah ground operations will be imminent.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) have already deployed its elite Nehal brigade in the Rafah region and are waiting for the outcome of the talks in Cairo.

President of Egypt Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has already shared the country‘s apprehensions of an Israeli attack in the Rafah region with the American Secretary of State, Antony Blinken during his last visit to Cairo.

Blinken has reached Saudi Arabia on a two-day visit and will be communicating with both the Egyptian and Qatar mediators regarding the temporary ceasefire. (IANS)


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