Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Israel denies talks with Hamas

JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Israel said Monday it was not engaged in talks with Hamas following a flurry of media reports suggesting the two sides were discussing a long-term ceasefire. "Israel is officially clarifying that it is not holding any meetings with Hamas, neither directly, nor via other countries or intermediaries," the office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement.

Arab and Turkish media have in recent weeks carried reports, that were picked up by Israeli media, claiming Israel and the Palestinian militant movement that rules the Gaza Strip were holding talks. According to the reports, the talks were aimed at reaching an eight-year or 10-year truce, with Israel removing its blockade on the coastal Palestinian territory.

A 50-day war between Israel and Hamas in July-August 2014 killed about 2,200 Palestinians, mostly civilians, and 73 on the Israeli side, mostly soldiers, and destroyed or damaged tens of thousands of homes in Gaza. more


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