Hamas asks Egypt, Qatar for clarity on truce and hostage deal provisions

CAIRO, Egypt — Hamas has asked Egyptian and Qatari mediators to provide clarity on the terms of the latest truce proposal being discussed as part of negotiations with Israel, an Egyptian official says.

The official, who has close ties to the talks and spoke on condition of anonymity in order to freely discuss the deal, says Hamas wants clear terms for the unconditional return of displaced people to the north of Gaza and to ensure that the second stage of the deal will include discussing the gradual and complete withdrawal of all Israeli troops from the entire Gaza Strip.

The official says the current deal didn’t fully explain who would be allowed to return north and how it would be decided.

It is not clear if Hamas’s demand for clarity would delay progress on the deal that’s emerging. Israel and Hamas have been far apart on the key issue of whether the war eventually ends as part of a later phase of the deal.

The emerging phased deal includes the release of 33 civilian and sick hostages held by terrorists in exchange for a halt to the fighting and the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

Most Popular