ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 147

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US says rescue op should have no impact on hostages talks

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US bureau chief

Palestinians inspect the damage in the rubble of a building where two hostages were reportedly held before being rescued during an operation by Israeli security forces in Rafah, on the southern Gaza Strip on February 12, 2024. (SAID KHATIB / AFP)
Palestinians inspect the damage in the rubble of a building where two hostages were reportedly held before being rescued during an operation by Israeli security forces in Rafah, on the southern Gaza Strip on February 12, 2024. (SAID KHATIB / AFP)

US State Department spokesman Matt Miller says Israel is “well within its rights” to conduct operations to rescue the hostages, as they did last night.

He adds that the operation “should in no way impact the negotiations” ongoing to secure the release of the remaining 134 hostages.

Meanwhile, senior Hamas official in Beirut Osama Hamdan says that Israel’s latest offer for a hostage deal is “a step back from the offer drafted in Paris,” proving that Israel “isn’t serious in pursuing the hostages’ release.”

According to him, Hamas delegation is currently in Cairo discussing Israel’s responses to the proposal formulated in Paris. Hamdan added that Israel is “imposing obstacles that prevent reaching an agreement.”

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