Hamas infighting pushing off ceasefire, hostage exchange deal – WSJ

Hamas infighting pushing off ceasefire, hostage exchange deal – WSJ

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Hamas’s top leaders are arguing about the proposed ceasefire and hostage exchange deal, forcing it to be pushed off further and further, the Wall Street Journal revealed, citing officials “familiar with the negotiations” on Friday night.

Hamas head Yahya Sinwar, as well as other leaders in the terrorist organization, are allegedly ready and willing to sign off on a proposal to stop fighting in Gaza for six weeks in exchange for the freeing of Israeli hostages.

“The organization’s exiled political leaders, though, are demanding more concessions and want to negotiate a permanent [ceasefire], they said,” the WSJ report, written by reporters Summer Said and Jared Malsin, claimed.

Where does the hostage deal stand?

The Qatari foreign ministry announced on Thursday evening that Hamas had given its initial approval for a ceasefire and hostage deal.

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer met on Wednesday to discuss the deal, which would free the 136 hostages.

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan speaks during a press briefing, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, in Tel Aviv, Israel, December 15, 2023. (credit: Violeta Santos Moura/Reuters)

What does the ceasefire and hostage deal include?

Reports have been varied about what is included in the US-backed hostage release and ceasefire deal. Most claim that it involves Hamas’s release of the remaining civilians – i.e. not IDF soldiers – among hostages captured on October 7, and only then the soldiers, and finally the bodies of dead hostages.

Israel is also expected to release jailed Palestinian security prisoners, as it did in the first deal. This time, however, the numbers are expected to be larger and involve terrorists with blood on their hands.

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As a result, the ceasefire that will take effect will reportedly span over a far longer period than the previous one-week pause.

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.





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