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Hamas leader says ready to discuss with Israel on Gaza ceasefire

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Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

“We are open to discuss any arrangement or initiative that could end the (Israeli) aggression,” Haniyeh, head of the Hamas political bureau, said in a televised speech aired on Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa TV, adding that without Hamas, any arrangement regarding the future of Gaza would not succeed.

Haniyeh said Hamas welcomed the United Nations General Assembly’s resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, and applauded the efforts of Saudi Arabia and the ministerial committee assigned by the Joint Arab-Islamic Extraordinary Summit to end the Gaza conflict.

He confirmed Hamas’s rejection of any post-war political arrangements that exclude Hamas and other Palestinian factions, and urged for increased international pressure to halt Israeli attacks on Gaza.

Earlier, Israeli media reported several Hamas leaders’ departure from Qatar to undisclosed destinations, suggesting potential relocations to countries such as Lebanon, Iran, or Algeria.

No confirmation from Hamas has been obtained regarding these reports.

Israel’s conflict with Hamas since Oct. 7 has resulted in extensive casualties. At least 18,608 Palestinians have been killed and 50,594 others wounded in the Israeli attacks on Gaza and about 1,200 people have died in the Hamas attacks on Israel.

Palestinian children are seen at a temporary shelter in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Dec. 13, 2023. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

Palestinian children are seen at a temporary shelter in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Dec. 13, 2023. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

A Palestinian child is seen at a temporary shelter in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Dec. 13, 2023. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

A Palestinian child is seen at a temporary shelter in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Dec. 13, 2023. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

A Palestinian child is seen at a temporary shelter in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Dec. 13, 2023. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Wednesday that the Gaza-ruling Palestinian faction is ready to discuss with Israel any arrangement or initiative that could lead to a ceasefire in Gaza.

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