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Talks on ceasefire in Gaza Strip to take place in Qatar

Talks on ceasefire in Gaza Strip to take place in Qatar Photo: Israeli delegation to hold Gaza ceasefire talks in Qatar (Getty Images)

The Security Cabinet of Israel has approved the departure of the Israeli negotiating delegation to Doha, Qatar, for talks on a temporary ceasefire in the Gaza Strip and the release of hostages, informs The Times of Israel.

It is noted that the delegation, led by Mossad Director David Barnea, has been given a "general mandate" to conduct negotiations on Monday, March 18. Some issues related to the negotiations will need to be separately considered and approved by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant.

The negotiating team has requested "a significant amount of time to conduct the negotiations so that it would be possible to improve the deal, and to bring an outline that we can stand behind."

An Israeli official, quoted by the Ynet portal, said: "We need to change the deal, it is important that we arrive with significant flexibility."

Israel-Hamas war

Following the attack by Hamas terrorists on Israel on October 7th, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) launched a ground military operation in the Gaza Strip, which continues to this day. The country's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that the operation aims to completely destroy Hamas and free the hostages.

On February 8th, Netanyahu declared that the full victory of the Israel Defense Forces is imminent. He also announced the readiness to commence a ground invasion of the city of Rafah near the border with Egypt in the southern Gaza Strip.

Israel plans to evacuate the peaceful residents of Rafah to "humanitarian zones" in the central part of the Gaza Strip, which amounts to 1.4 million people, ahead of the planned ground assault on the city.

On March 15th, Netanyahu rejected another ceasefire agreement with the Hamas movement.