Israel fears Hamas won't compromise now since aid flow to Gaza has resumed

'We gave up our strong bargaining chips for nothing': Israeli sources

PALESTINIAN-ISRAEL-CONFLICT-GAZA-EID-FESTIVAL A displaced child shows a packet of sweets at a camp on the first day of the Eid al-Fitr festival, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, in Rafah | AFP

Israeli officials are worried that the decision to pull back troops from Khan Younis and the surge in humanitarian aid reaching the Gaza Strip will be detrimental to their position during the hostage release talks, a local Israeli media has reported.

"Officials in Jerusalem think both moves hurt negotiations," Ynet news site quoted unnamed Israeli sources. "We gave up our strong bargaining chips for nothing and now Hamas’s position is even tougher to crack," Ynet quotes Israeli sources saying. 

The report comes as another round of hostage release and ceasefire talks continue in Cairo. Hamas has been seeking an end to a war and a troop withdrawal. On Wednesday, the militant group responded that they are studying Israel's proposal for a ceasefire despite it not meeting the demands of Palestinian militant factions.

"The movement (Hamas) is interested in reaching an agreement that puts an end to the aggression on our people. Despite that, the Israeli position remains intransigent and it didn't meet any of the demands of our people and our resistance," Hamas said in a statement following the latest ceasefire proposal. 

The US is also pushing Israel to call for a six-to-eight-week ceasefire. The White House has recently shown a major shift in its Israel policy though it continues to adamantly deny it.

"What I’m calling for is for the Israelis to just call for a ceasefire, allow for the next six, eight weeks, total access to all food and medicine going into the country," Biden told Univision, a US Spanish-language TV network, in an interview aired Tuesday. "I’ve spoken with everyone from the Saudis to the Jordanians to the Egyptians. They’re prepared to move in," Biden said. "They’re prepared to move this food in. And I think there’s no excuse to not provide for the medical and food needs of those people. It should be done now."

On whether Netanyahu is more concerned about his own political survival than Israel’s national interest, Biden said, "I think what he’s doing is a mistake… I don’t agree with his approach."

The video, however, was taped last Wednesday, which is two days after the IDF’s deadly strike on a World Central Kitchen convoy and a day before Biden held a call with Netanyahu during which he reportedly threatened to cease support of Israel during the war unless he ensures the flow of humanitarian aid to Israel.


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