Hamas stands firm for permanent ceasefire in Gaza, full Israeli withdrawal

Hamas political bureau leader Ismail Haniyeh
Hamas political bureau leader Ismail Haniyeh . . . seeks guarantee of a permanent ceasefire with a full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza. Image: AJ screenshot APR

Asia Pacific Report

The head of the Hamas political bureau, Ismail Haniyeh, says the group is ready to accept an agreement that guarantees a permanent ceasefire.

He says it also wants a full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza, reconstruction, and an exchange deal, Al Jazeera reports.

Haniyeh said the group’s position was consistent with the foundational principles of the UN-backed ceasefire proposal.

Haniyeh, speaking in a televised address on Eid day, also said Hamas was ready to accept an agreement that guaranteesd a permanent ceasefire, full Israeli withdrawal from Gaza, reconstruction, and an exchange deal.

Palestinians would continue to show resilience, resistance, and commitment to their national struggle, he added in comments after US Secretary of State Blinken criticised Hamas last week for its reply to the ceasefire proposal.

Israel’s government has yet to publicly back the deal, despite US claims that it has accepted it.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has continued to insist that the war would not end before Hamas is defeated.

Wider society ‘boiling over’
In light of Haniyeh’s comments, academic Dr Youcef Bouandel from Qatar University said disunity within Israel’s war cabinet and wider society was “boiling over” and “strengthening the hand” of Hamas in ceasefire negotiations.

Hamas political bureau leader Ismail Haniyeh talks to Al Jazeera.   Video: AJ

Meanwhile, an Israeli political analyst, Akiva Eldar, said Netanyahu was “leading them to the abyss” and Israel was becoming a growing “pariah” state.

Israel’s government was buckling not only from Israeli citizens demonstrating against it, but also from international pressure to end its war on Gaza, said Eldar.

On the world stage, Israel was increasingly becoming a pariah state while at home there were sustained protests calling for Netanyahu’s government to be removed.

“I travelled to Amsterdam and for the first time, I don’t feel comfortable to present my Israeli passport,” Eldar told Al Jazeera.

“The Israelis are not welcome everywhere.”

In light of this growing tension, Eldar predicted the movement against Netanyahu’s government would come from the grassroots.

Former PM Barak calls for ‘1 million Israelis’
Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak called to the Israelis to start protests, demonstrations around the Knesset, or Parliament, and he has calling for 1 million Israelis.

A Palestinian prisoners’ group has said that there are more than 9300 Palestinians remaining in Israeli prisons.

The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society said that among the 9300 people held by Israel were at least 75 women and 250 children.

It has stressed that the total number did not include all the people Israel had detained in Gaza, estimated to be in the thousands.

Israeli prison authorities have announced the detention of 899 Palestinians from the besieged enclave under the classification of an “illegal fighter”, the group said.

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