Israel Pulled Negotiators Out of Qatar and Struck Gaza

World | December 3, 2023, Sunday // 10:18|  views

Israel withdrew its negotiating team from Qatar and launched airstrikes in the Gaza Strip in the new phase of its offensive against Hamas after a week-long truce. The Islamist group said it would continue negotiations for the release of more hostages only after the end of the war in Gaza. According to Hamas, the new Israeli attacks have claimed more than 190 victims.

Israel announced that an airstrike killed a Hamas commander directly involved in the bloody attack on October 7, which triggered the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas' military wing said it fired a barrage of rockets at Tel Aviv in response to Israel's continued attacks on the Gaza Strip.

Israeli negotiators will return home, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office announced. The statement said the group had failed to honor its part of the agreement to release child and female hostages. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said 15 women and two children were still among the hostages held by Hamas. Meanwhile, Hamas has said that until Israel ceases fire in Gaza, there will be no new exchange.

During last week's ceasefire, Hamas released 105 hostages and Israel released 240 Palestinian prisoners.

Israel suggests a total of 137 hostages are still being held in Gaza.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has pointed to the need for Israel to protect civilians in Gaza, calling them the "center of gravity" in Israel's war with the radical Palestinian movement Hamas.

"I have repeatedly made it clear to Israel's leaders that protecting Palestinian civilians in Gaza is both a moral responsibility and a strategic obligation," he added.

US Vice President Kamala Harris presented US goals regarding the end of the conflict between Israel and Hamas. Harris emphasized that once the war is over, reconstruction efforts must be undertaken "within the context of a clear political horizon for the Palestinian people towards a state of their own, led by a renewed Palestinian Authority, as well as having significant support from the international community and from countries in the region", the statement added.

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Tags: Israel, Hamas, Palestine, Qatar


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