Israeli Delegation in Egypt to Discuss Ceasefire amid Netanyahu’s New Conditions

Head of Shin Bet, Ronen Bar (L) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Photo: via Wikimedia Commons, file)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The head of Israel’s Shin Bet security service, Ronen Bar, has traveled to Egypt to continue talks on a potential ceasefire and prisoner exchange deal.

Israel’s Shin Bet chief, Ronen Bar, led a delegation to Egypt on Monday to continue negotiations with Hamas regarding a potential hostage swap deal and a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, according to Israeli media.

“The head of Israel’s Shin Bet security service, Ronen Bar, has traveled to Egypt to continue talks on a potential ceasefire and hostage deal with Hamas,” the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported.

“Bar will also discuss measures to prevent arms smuggling into the Gaza Strip from the Egyptian border,” Haaretz added.

Efforts by the US, Qatar, and Egypt to mediate an agreement between Israel and Hamas for a prisoner exchange deal and ceasefire have been ongoing for months but have been hindered by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s refusal to halt hostilities, as demanded by the Palestinian movement Hamas.

Netanyahu’s New Conditions

Al-Jazeera reported on Sunday that the heads of Israeli security services were shocked by Netanyahu’s comments on the ceasefire agreement.

Earlier in the day, Netanyahu set new conditions, stating that a Gaza ceasefire plan should facilitate the release of Israeli captives “without harming the other aims of the war.”

Netanyahu’s office released a statement indicating that his refusal to halt the Gaza offensive “is what brought Hamas back to the negotiating table.” 

‘Until War Aims are Met’ – Netanyahu Says Any Deal Must Allow Israel to Continue Fighting

He asserted that the “framework agreed by Israel and welcomed by President Biden will enable Israel to return hostages without compromising the other aims of the war.”

The Israeli prime minister added that any agreement would allow Tel Aviv to resume fighting “until its war aims are met.” 

He also emphasized that “weapons smuggling to Hamas from the Gaza-Egypt border will not be possible,” and pledged that “Israel will maximize the number of living hostages returned from Hamas captivity.”

Biden’s Proposal

In May, Biden mentioned that Israel had proposed a three-phase plan to end hostilities in Gaza and secure the release of hostages. 

This plan includes a ceasefire, a prisoner exchange deal, and the reconstruction of Gaza.

Israeli Channel 13, citing Mossad sources, reported that Israeli officials are optimistic about reaching a deal to retrieve Israeli captives from Gaza. 

‘Deal Now!’ – Israelis Call For Ceasefire Deal, Early Elections in Nationwide Protests

According to these sources, Israel views the current moment as “opportune” for negotiating with Hamas, with security authorities advising political leaders to take advantage of it.

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid questioned Netanyahu’s statement, asking, “What is the benefit of these provocative statements when we are at a critical moment in the negotiations, on which the lives of the prisoners depend?”

(PC, Anadolu)

(The Palestine Chronicle is a registered 501(c)3 organization, thus, all donations are tax deductible.)
Our Vision For Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders & Intellectuals Speak Out

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.