Hamas Demands Written Guarantees For Ceasefire Deal With Israel

Hamas has agreed to a U.S.-proposed ceasefire deal that involves releasing hostages but insists on “written guarantees” for future negotiations regarding an end to the conflict with Israel. This demand for written assurances marks a shift from Hamas’s earlier stance that required Israel to completely end its operations in Gaza.

A Hamas representative stated that they seek mediators to negotiate a lasting truce, specifying that these guarantees must be documented. The mediators for this negotiation would be Egyptian and Qatari officials, and Hamas demands a vow from Israel not to continue fighting during the negotiation process.

Israel’s Mossad intelligence director, David Barnea, met with the mediators in Doha on Friday and rejected Hamas’s demand for written guarantees, according to Axios. The main point of contention lies in Article 14 of the Israeli proposal, which details the negotiation timeline during a temporary ceasefire. The original language states that the U.S., Egypt, and Qatar will “make every effort” to reach an agreement, whereas Hamas wants this changed to “ensure.”

Israel fears that Hamas could extend negotiations indefinitely, preventing Israel from resuming actions to dismantle Hamas’s military capabilities. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu acknowledged the “gaps between the parties” and confirmed that negotiators would return to Doha.

CIA Director William Burns is also set to travel to Doha, signaling the high stakes and international involvement in resolving the conflict.