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Hamas blames Netanyahu for collapse of truce talks

Children look for salvageable items amid the rubble of Al-Bukhari Mosque destroyed in Israeli strikes in Deir al-Balah in central Gaza on March 2, 2024. (Photo by AFP)

A senior Hamas official has blamed Benjamin Netanyahu for the collapse of the latest round of talks on a ceasefire deal in the Gaza Strip, saying the head of the Israeli regime is not willing to reach an agreement to end to the genocidal campaign in the besieged Palestinian territory.

Basem Naim, the head of Hamas’ Department of Politics and Foreign Relations, made the remarks on Tuesday, after ceasefire negotiations between the Palestinian resistance group and mediators reportedly ended with no breakthrough in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.

“(Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu doesn’t want to reach an agreement and the ball now is in the Americans’ court” to press him for a deal, Naim said.

He said Hamas presented its proposal for a ceasefire agreement to the mediators during two days of talks, adding that it was now waiting for a response from the Israelis, who stayed away from this round.

Israel has declined to comment publicly on the talks in Cairo.

Earlier in the day, an unnamed source told Reuters that Israel was staying away because Hamas had rejected its demand to furnish a list of all captives who are still alive.

Naim said such a thing was impossible without a ceasefire first as captives were scattered across the war zone and held by separate resistance groups.

A high-ranking delegation of movement Hamas arrived in the Cairo on Sunday to hold talks on a ceasefire deal that would that would take effect across Gaza before the start of the holy fasting month of Ramadan next week.

The expected deal have also included a swap of 40 Israeli captives for 400 Palestinian prisoners as well as an increase in the number of humanitarian aid trucks entering the besieged territory.

Representatives from the United States and Qatar were also in Cairo for mediation in the indirect talks between Hamas and Israel.

Israel launched its genocidal war on Gaza on October 7 after Hamas waged the surprise Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity in response to the its intensified violence against the Palestinians.

Since the start of the offensive, the Tel Aviv regime has killed some 30,410 Palestinians and injured 71,700 others, according to health authorities in Gaza.

The Tel Aviv regime has also imposed a “complete siege” on the territory, cutting off fuel, electricity, food, and water to the more than two million people living there.

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