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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Rejects Hamas Ceasefire Proposal

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected Hamas's three-stage ceasefire proposal in a news conference and said “We have not committed to any of the delusional demands of Hamas” and “The victory is achievable; it is not a matter of years or decades; it is a matter of months” according to an article published by CNN on February 8, 2024.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said “While there are some clear non-starters in Hamas’ response, we do think it creates space for agreement to be reached, and we will work at that relentlessly until we get there” according to an article published by Associated Press on February 8, 2024.

Hamas's offer was a response to a proposal by the U.S. and Israeli spy chiefs and delivered to Hamas through Qatari and Egyptian mediators according to an article published by Reuters on February 8, 2024.

Hamas offered a three-stage cease-fire proposal in which each stage of the truce must be completed before the next begins according to an article published by Al Jazeera on February 7, 2024.

Here’s Hamas's three-stage cease-fire proposal

First stage  

In the first 45 days, Hamas will release all female, the elderly, the sick, and male captives under 19 years of age who are not members of or conscripts to the Israeli armed forces.

In return, Israel will have to release 1500 Palestinian prisoners 500 of them would have to be serving life sentences out of 5,200 who were in Israeli prisons as of October 2023 including women, children, and the elderly. 

Allowing at least 500 humanitarian aid and fuel trucks daily to enter Gaza. The provision of 60,000 temporary homes and 200,000 tents, removing the barriers to Palestinians who want to return to their homes in Gaza, all crossings into the Gaza Strip to be opened, and the ability of Palestinians who need medical care to travel freely out of Gaza.

Second stage  

The second phase will last for 45 days and all the remaining Israeli male captives will be released. In return, the withdrawal of the Israeli soldiers from Gaza, more humanitarian aid to enter Gaza, and the reconstruction of damaged infrastructure.

Return to a state of calm and complete truce must be agreed upon before going to the third stage.

Third stage  

All the bodies or remains are to be released by both sides after due identification processes and the continuation of the humanitarian measures agreed to in the previous stages. 

The current fighting started after Hamas attacked Israel on the 7th of October which is the deadliest in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that killed more than 27,000 Palestinians and 1,200 people in Israel according to an article published by The Guardian on February 7, 2024.

Edited by: Megha Siddapura Manjunatha

Image: The New York Times


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