Hamas says it is awaiting Israeli response as Cairo hostage talks end without breakthrough

Ceasefire talks between Hamas and mediators broke up on Tuesday in Cairo with no breakthrough, a senior Hamas official says.

Bassem Naim tells Reuters the group had presented its proposal for a ceasefire agreement to mediators during two days of talks, and is now waiting for a response from the Israelis, who stayed away from this round.

“[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 says.

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

An Egyptian source tells Sky News Arabia that talks are ongoing, while acknowledging there are “difficulties.”

Egyptian security sources said on Monday they were still in touch with the Israelis to allow the negotiations to continue without an Israeli delegation present.

A source told The Times of Israel this week that Israel was staying away because Hamas had rejected its demand to furnish a list of all hostages who are still alive.

Naim says this was impossible without a ceasefire first as hostages were scattered across the war zone and held by separate groups.

The Cairo talks had been billed as a final hurdle to reach the war’s first extended ceasefire — a 40-day truce during which hostages would be freed and aid would be pumped into Gaza to stave off famine, ahead of Ramadan, which is due to begin at the start of next week.

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