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Hope of ceasefire emerges in Israel-Gaza conflict

01:32 AM Mar 04, 2024 IST | SURINDER SINGH OBEROI
hope of ceasefire emerges in israel gaza conflict
Palestinians inspect the ruins of Watan Tower destroyed in Israeli airstrikes in Gaza city, on October 8, 2023. Wafa/Creative commons
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New Delhi, Mar 3: International media reports, quoting official sources, suggest optimism for an imminent ceasefire in the Israel-Gaza conflict, potentially marking a six-week pause with the release of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners.

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A delegation from Hamas has landed in Cairo, Egypt, igniting hopes for a ceasefire negotiation breakthrough. Egyptian officials, coordinating talks with Qatar, anticipate the participation of delegations from both Hamas and Israel in the upcoming discussions.

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According to CNN, Hamas is supposedly indicating that a truce agreement could materialize within the next 24 to 48 hours, pending Israel’s compliance with its demands. The prospect of a deal gained traction following reports from a senior US official indicating Israel’s inclination to accept a framework for a six-week ceasefire.

“The six-week ceasefire would allow for the release of hostages in Gaza deemed the most vulnerable, including women, the elderly, and the wounded, and the flow of aid into the beleaguered coastal enclave,” stated a senior Biden administration official, as reported by CNN.

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The official emphasized that while Israel has shown a willingness to engage in a framework deal, the impasse lies in Hamas’s reluctance to agree to a defined category of vulnerable hostages.

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As talks progress, the urgency for a ceasefire amplifies, particularly heightened after Thursday’s tragic incident outside Gaza City, where at least 112 individuals lost their lives amid a rush for an aid convoy.

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Accusations and denials have characterized the conflict, with Hamas alleging Israeli aggression towards civilians seeking sustenance. Israel countered, asserting that their troops targeted individuals who approached them, with most deaths attributed to the ensuing chaos.

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Amidst mounting casualties and humanitarian concerns, the pressure for a ceasefire intensifies, driven by warnings from aid organizations of a looming famine in northern Gaza. In response, the US conducted its first airdrop of humanitarian aid, delivering over 30,000 meals to Gaza on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Israel confirmed an intensive wave of airstrikes in Khan Younis, southern Gaza, with casualties yet to be confirmed. Eleven individuals lost their lives in an Israeli airstrike at a displaced persons’ camp in Rafah, southern Gaza, on Saturday. The evolving situation underlines the imperative for swift diplomatic resolutions, as both sides grapple with the devastating toll of the conflict and the urgent need for humanitarian relief.

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