Axios: Israel May Postpone Ground Invasion to Discuss Release of Israelis Held in Gaza

The moment the Palestinian Resistance Movement Hamas releases two Israeli women on October 23. (Photo: Military Media, video grab)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Israel is willing to postpone a ground invasion of the besieged Gaza Strip to allow negotiations aimed at releasing a large number of Israelis currently held in Gaza by the Palestinian Resistance movement Hamas, Axios news website reported on Tuesday.

“Both Israel and the (US) Biden administration want to exhaust every effort to try and get hostages out of Gaza. If Hamas proposes a big package, of course, we will be ready to do things in return,” a senior Israeli official said, according to Axios.

The website also cited Israeli officials as saying that “the Israelis told Egyptian mediators that if Hamas wants some kind of hostage deal, it needs to release all the women and children it’s holding”.

Hamas has released four ‘hostages’ in recent days, citing ‘humanitarian reasons’.

According to Axios, “President Biden’s team is holding negotiations with Israel and the Qatari and Egyptian mediators, who are talking with Hamas.”

For his part, Hamas official Khaled Meshal told Sky News on Monday that “if Israel stops its airstrikes in Gaza, Qatari and Egyptian officials will help find a way to have the hostages released,” Axios wrote.

The news website also mentioned Israeli officials as saying that “even if a hostage deal were struck, the Israeli military wouldn’t drop its plans for a ground assault in Gaza.”

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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