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Israeli Delegation Continues Talks in Qatar on Gaza Moratorium and Prisoner Release

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Israeli Delegation Continues Talks in Qatar on Gaza Moratorium and Prisoner Release

An Israeli delegation is expected to be in Qatar soon to continue talks on a moratorium on the Gaza war and the possible release of prisoners. The talks, which began in Paris last week, included heads of Israel’s spy agency Mossad and domestic security agency Shin Bet, as well as mediators from the United States, Qatar, and Egypt.

Upon their return from Paris, Israel’s national security adviser Chachi Hanegbi hinted at the possibility of an agreement in a television interview on Saturday night. Israeli media reports suggest that negotiators have met with the Israeli cabinet and agreed to send a delegation to Qatar in the coming days to further negotiations.

According to Al Jazeera’s William Marx, the negotiating framework being discussed could potentially halt fighting for up to six weeks if one prisoner is released from Gaza each day. This could involve the release of approximately 40 Israeli hostages in exchange for hundreds of Palestinian prisoners currently detained in Israeli prisons. The deal may also lead to an increase in humanitarian aid to Gaza and the return of Palestinians to heavily bombed areas in the north of the enclave.

However, Hamas has not yet commented on the proposed agreement. The group had previously stated they would only accept a complete cessation of fighting and an end to the siege of Gaza, a condition rejected by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

In the wake of the ongoing talks, pressure is mounting on Netanyahu and his government to secure the release of the prisoners. Thousands of protesters gathered in Tel Aviv’s “Hostage Square” over the weekend, demanding faster action and calling for new elections. Protesters expressed frustration with the current government and called for new leadership that prioritizes the interests of the people.

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As negotiations continue, the hope remains that a potential agreement could bring about a temporary halt to the violence in Gaza and pave the way for humanitarian relief in the embattled region.

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