Blinken Urged Qatar to Threaten Hamas Leaders with Expulsion – Reports

US Secretary Antony J. Blinken meets with Qatari Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani in Doha. (Photo: US Department of State, via Wikimedia Commons)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The pressure, according to the report, “came at a time when negotiations between Hamas and Israel had stalled”.

The United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken pressured Qatar to threaten Hamas leaders with deportation from Doha in case the group does not agree on a prisoner exchange deal, CNN reported on Thursday. 

Citing US officials, the report revealed that Blinken conveyed his message to Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani during a meeting held on March 5 in Washington D.C.

“US officials said that Qatar, which has been a critical partner to the US in efforts to reach a ceasefire deal, understood the message and received it without major pushback,” CNN reported, adding that Qatari officials did not comment on the “specific meeting.”

The pressure, according to the report, “came at a time when negotiations between Hamas and Israel had stalled, before Hamas came back to the table with a new set of demands which were discussed this week in Doha”.

The report also cited sources familiar with the meeting as saying that “the Emir suggested that the country would be willing to expel Hamas leaders from Doha if they were asked to do so by the US”.

Indirect negotiations continue in Doha between Israel and Hamas, mediated by Qatar and Egypt and with the participation of the US, aiming to achieve a ceasefire and a prisoner exchange deal.

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Gaza Genocide

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7. 

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 31,988 Palestinians have been killed, and 74,188 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip. 

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Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children. 

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire.’ 

(PC, Anadolu)

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  1. That’s negotiating in bad faith. In commercial dealings the world over, negotiating in bad faith negates the deal.

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