Even as the deadly assault on Gaza continued and missiles were fired into Israel, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said to Reuters on Tuesday that the Palestinian militant group was close to a truce agreement with Israel. According to Haniyeh, Hamas responded to Qatari mediators. Hamas officials are “close to reaching a truce agreement” with Israel, and the group has given its response to Qatari mediators, Haniyeh stated in a statement sent to Reuters by his aide.
Meanwhile, a Hamas official said to Al Jazeera TV that the talks were mostly on the duration of the truce, arrangements for delivering aid to Gaza and the exchange of Israeli hostages held by Hamas for Palestinian prisoners in Israel. According to the official, Issat el Reshiq, both sides are likely to release women and children, with more details to be provided by Qatar, the mediating party.
Notably, Hamas took around 240 hostages during their October 7 incursion into Israel, resulting in 1,200 deaths.