Hamas Calls for Ceasefire to Locate and Release Israeli Hostages

World | April 12, 2024, Friday // 09:28
Bulgaria: Hamas Calls for Ceasefire to Locate and Release Israeli Hostages

In a significant development in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian movement Hamas has issued a call for a ceasefire to facilitate the location and release of Israeli hostages held in the Gaza Strip. According to reports from BTA and DPA, Hamas asserts that the fate of the hostages can only be clarified in the absence of hostilities, highlighting the urgent need for a cessation of violence.

Basem Naim, a senior member of Hamas's political wing, emphasized the necessity of a ceasefire to gather accurate information on the captured Israelis, who are reportedly held in different locations by various groups within Gaza. Naim stated that negotiations are underway to secure heavy equipment for locating the hostages, some of whom are believed to be buried under debris alongside deceased Palestinians.

Addressing media reports regarding Hamas's rejection of a recent US compromise proposal for a ceasefire, Naim clarified the movement's position. Reports had suggested that Hamas balked at the proposal due to its inability to release 40 hostages as stipulated in the first phase of the three-phase deal. However, Hamas asserted that it lacks 40 living hostages from the specified categories, raising concerns about the fate of the captives.

The US compromise proposal, presented by CIA Director William Burns during talks in Cairo, called for the release of 40 hostages in exchange for the liberation of 900 Palestinian prisoners, including those serving life sentences for killing Israelis. Additionally, Israel would allow displaced Palestinians to return to the northern Gaza Strip under the proposed six-week ceasefire.

Hamas's demands include a permanent ceasefire and the withdrawal of Israeli troops from the disputed coastal zone, while Israel has not ruled out the possibility of continued hostilities post-ceasefire. Mediated negotiations between the two parties, facilitated by the US, Qatar, and Egypt, aim to bridge the gap and reach a sustainable resolution to the conflict.

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Tags: Hamas, ceasefire, Israeli, Hostages, Gaza

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