Leaked Gaza Ceasefire Proposal Is US 'Psychological Warfare', Hamas Says

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Feb 29, 2024 - 12:00 AM

Via The Cradle

Hamas official Ahmad Abdul Hadi stated Tuesday that a leaked proposal for a ceasefire deal in Gaza is part of a "psychological warfare" campaign being carried out by the US.

Details of the alleged proposal were leaked to Reuters on Monday, the same day US President Joe Biden said he hoped a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas could be reached by March 4 (next Monday). 

Israeli forces in Gaza, via IDF

"My national security adviser tells me that they're close. They're close. They're not done yet. My hope is by next Monday we'll have a ceasefire," Biden claimed during an appearance on a late-night US talk show.

But Abdul Hadi, the Hamas representative in Lebanon, stated that Hamas is not satisfied with the proposal and will not compromise on any of its demands, particularly "on a ceasefire and reaching an honorable, serious deal."

Hamas is seeking a permanent end to the war and the release of thousands of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. Israel is seeking the release of the 136 captives held by Hamas in Gaza and a temporary ceasefire that would allow it to resume the war after a pause.

"We are open to any ideas posed by mediators but are also keen on preserving our key demands," Abdul Hadi told Al-Mayadeen, adding that Israel is "seeking to hold Hamas accountable for any later failures in talks, planning to use this as an excuse to pave the way for the invasion of Rafah."

He said the leaks were not part of the Paris negotiations but a US and Israeli attempt to give the public an illusion that Hamas had approved of them. He reiterated that "everything being shared is not serious, but a ploy to maneuver and press on the Resistance."

The proposal leaked to Reuters outlined plans for a 40-day truce during which Hamas would free around 40 captives – including female soldiers, those under 19 or over 50 years old, and the sick – in return for about 400 Palestinians held captive in Israel.

Israel would withdraw its troops from populated areas of Gaza. Displaced Gaza residents, excluding men of fighting age, would be permitted to return to their homes. Israel would be required to allow additional humanitarian aid to enter Gaza, as hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in the strip are on the verge of starvation. Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) also responded to the leaked Paris proposal.

"The leaks are an attempt to pressure the Palestinians and incite them against the resistance … They are pushing for a ceasefire before Ramadan in anticipation of what might happen in Al-Quds … The enemy believes that it can deceive the resistance with different methods in order to achieve a victory it has failed to achieve on the ground," PIJ Political Bureau member Ihsan Ataya told Al-Mayadeen.

In Gaza, residents speaking to Reuters expressed mixed feelings about possible outcomes. "We don't want a pause, we want a permanent ceasefire, we want an end to the killing," said Mustafa Basel, a father of five from Gaza City, now displaced in Rafah.

"Unfortunately, people's conditions are so grim that some may accept a pause, even [just] during Ramadan," he said. "They want a permanent end to the war, but the dire conditions make them want a pause even for a month or 40 days in the hope it becomes permanent."