Hamas, Israel delegations leave Cairo after Gaza ceasefire talks

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Delegations from Hamas and Israel participating in Cairo talks for Gaza ceasefire departed for consultations, on Thursday after two days of ceasefire negotiations, according to a high-level Egyptian source who spoke to Daily News Egypt.

Some outstanding points of disagreement remain unresolved, Egyptian mediation efforts continue in an attempt to bridge the gap between the two parties, particularly in light of recent events in the Gaza Strip, the source added.

The discussions came amid escalating violence and increasing international pressure to de-escalate the conflict in Gaza.

The source indicated that further diplomatic work is ongoing, highlighting the challenges in finding a resolution amid the current hostilities.

Escalating Humanitarian Crisis in Gaza

According to the United Nations Agency for Palestinians (UNRWA), around 80,000 people have fled Rafah since Monday, indicating the severe humanitarian impact of the conflict. The pressure on Israel to avoid a full-scale ground operation in Rafah has also grown, especially considering the damage already inflicted on the region.

Israel has described its military actions in Rafah as “precise counterterrorism operations in specific areas of eastern Rafah.” However, international mediators, including Egypt, Qatar, and the United States, are pushing for an agreement that would stop the Israeli attacks in Gaza and facilitate the exchange of captives still held by Hamas.

Since the conflict began on 7 October, Israeli military operations have resulted in the deaths of 34,844 people, injuries to 78,404, and significant damage to Gaza’s infrastructure, displacing a large portion of the strip’s residents.

US Shifts Stance on Arms Supplies to Israel

On Wednesday, US President Joe Biden announced on CNN that the United States would no longer provide Israel with weapons for use in an assault on Rafah. Biden stated that while defensive weaponry such as ammunition for Iron Dome systems would continue to be supplied, the delivery of offensive arms required for large-scale operations in a city would be halted.

In response, Israel’s far-right national security minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir, criticized the US President’s remarks, posting on X that “Hamas loved Biden.”

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