September 18, 2018

Hamas Leadership Reportedly Agrees to Possible Ceasefire With Israel – With Conditions

Hamas leadership has reportedly agreed to a possible five-to-10-year ceasefire agreement with Israel. However, Israel has signaled that they will only sign onto an agreement in which Hamas releases Israeli soldiers they have held captive since 2014.

According to the Times of Israel, Egypt hammered out a ceasefire agreement that will re-open the Refah border crossing with Egypt as well as loosen restrictions on the Kerem Shalom border crossing with Israel. The agreement would also hand over control of the Gaza Strip to the Palestinian Authority and hold elections in six months, which would be the first time they would be held in Gaza since 2006.

The agreement would also set forth humanitarian efforts for Gaza and begin negotiations with Israel over the Israeli soldiers that have been held captive in Gaza.

Hamas’ leadership agreed to the deal, and an Israeli official is reportedly going to Qatar to talk about enforcement of the deal, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the family of Oron Shaul, one of the deceased Israeli soldiers held captive by Hamas, in a letter, “For the deal to have practical and moral validity, its first stipulation must be the release of our sons…. A deal without the return of our sons is a surrender that only serves as evidence of our country’s weakness.”

Most recently, Hamas has been terrorizing Israel by launching rockets and incendiary kites and balloons into Israel and organizing riots at the Israel-Gaza border to breach the fence.

Egypt had previously brokered a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas on July 14, but the ceasefire was ignored by Hamas, prompting Israel to retaliate.