‘War of Annihilation’ – Hamas Criticizes Blinken for Exonerating Israel over Ceasefire Obstruction

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. (Image: Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The Palestinian Resistance movement Hamas has accused US Secretary of State Antony Blinken of trying to absolve Israel from hindering the ceasefire process.

“Blinken’s attempts to exonerate the (Israeli) occupation and hold us responsible for obstructing a ceasefire are part of his country’s complicity in the war of annihilation,” Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday.

On Monday, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution backing a Gaza ceasefire proposal put forth by US President Joe Biden.

On May 31, Biden announced that Israel had presented a three-phase plan to end hostilities in Gaza and secure the release of hostages held there. The plan includes a ceasefire, a hostage-prisoner exchange, and the reconstruction of Gaza.

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Hamas stated that it had responded “positively” and “responsibly” to all proposals aimed at reaching a ceasefire in Gaza and releasing detainees.

“Israel continued to reject any permanent ceasefire, in clear contradiction to the UN Security Council resolution and Biden’s initiative,” Hamas said.

The group called on Washington to pressure Israel to accept a deal leading to a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.

On Wednesday, Blinken said Hamas had suggested numerous changes to Biden’s ceasefire proposal, noting that “some of the changes are workable, some are not.”

The day before, Blinken mentioned that Netanyahu had “reaffirmed his commitment” to a Gaza ceasefire proposal during their meeting on Monday evening.

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However, neither Netanyahu nor any member of his government has publicly endorsed the proposal. To the contrary, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has consistently asserted that Israel will not cease its campaign until Hamas is defeated.

‘Not Significant’

A senior Hamas leader informed Reuters news agency on Thursday that the changes requested by the movement to the US-proposed ceasefire are “not significant” and involve the complete withdrawal of Israeli troops from the Gaza Strip.

The Hamas leader explained that their demands included selecting 100 Palestinian prisoners with long sentences for release. The Israeli proposal had excluded these 100 prisoners, limiting releases to those with less than 15 years remaining on their sentences.

“There are no significant amendments that, according to Hamas leadership, warrant objection,” the Hamas leader stated.

Hamas’ demands also cover the reconstruction of Gaza, lifting the blockade, opening border crossings, allowing free movement of people, and unrestricted transportation of goods, the senior leader added.

Ongoing 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, 37,202 Palestinians have been killed, and 84,932 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. 

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

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The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly 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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