While the bombings continue in Rafah, the truce proposal transmitted by Hamas has not been accepted by Israel. The Hebrew state considers the agreement too far from its demands, particularly regarding the hostages.

Monday May 6, 2024, Hamas announced in a press release that it had informed Egypt and Qatar – mediator countries with the United States – of its approval of “their proposal to find a ceasefire agreement” with Israel in Gaza. At stake, in particular, is the fate of dozens of hostages held in the Gaza Strip. “The time has come for all parties involved to fulfill their commitment and turn this opportunity into an agreement for the return of all the hostages,” says the Families Forum, an Israeli association of relatives of hostages. In total, 132 hostages are being held by Hamas.

At the end of April, a text approved by Israel included three phases, including a first of 40 days with the release of 33 hostages in exchange for the release of Palestinian prisoners with a ratio of one to 20. Israel then decided to release those convicted , in addition to women and adolescents, which was not initially planned.

Problem is, the recent agreement between Hamas and Israel is far from meeting the demands of the Jewish state. This is why, this Tuesday, the Israeli army continues its bombings in the south of the Gaza Strip. This agreement presents significant differences with the one desired by Israel last week, already considered “extremely generous” by the United States.

In the new text, if Hamas does indeed plan to release 33 Israeli hostages during a first phase of 42 days, which already constitutes a slight difference, a fundamental otherness exists and did not fit into Israel’s plans at all. The hostages could be “alive or dead”. A response which could mean that some hostages are already no longer alive. The ratio, which was to be 1:20, would increase to one hostage for every 30 Palestinian prisoners. Worse, up to 1 in 50 if the released hostage is a female soldier. If Hamas’ new proposal is “far from Israeli demands” as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office indicated, all hopes may not be buried.

The Israeli war cabinet decided to send “a high-ranking delegation to Egypt with the aim of maximizing the chances of reaching an agreement on terms acceptable to Israel” explain the Prime Minister’s office. Qatar, for its part, announces the sending of a delegation to Cairo on Tuesday, May 7, “to relaunch indirect negotiations between the two parties (…) with the hope of reaching an agreement for a ceasefire.” immediate and permanent fire” in “exchange of prisoners and hostages”. At the same time, the Israeli operation in Rafah continues “in order to exert military pressure on Hamas with the aim of progressing towards the release of the hostages and the achievement of other war objectives” confide Benyamin’s services Netanyahu.