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Biden suggests Netanyahu is prolonging the war to stay in power: Live updates

Some Palestinians in Gaza expressed hope that peace talks could move forward after President Biden endorsed Israel’s roadmap toward a permanent ceasefire and called on Hamas to accept the plan. But many remain skeptical that American influence will bring an immediate end to the war and their suffering.

After eight months of devastating bombing, many in Gaza believe that Hamas should make all the necessary compromises to end the war and allow reconstruction to begin.

“I hope Hamas will accept this deal,” said Ayman Skeik, a 31-year-old businessman from Gaza City who was displaced to Deir al-Balah in central Gaza. “But I’m still afraid it won’t be achieved.”

Declaring Hamas no longer capable of carrying out a major terrorist attack on Israel, President Biden said on Friday that it was time for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza and endorsed it. a new plan he said Israel had offered to release the hostages and work toward a permanent end to the war and the reconstruction of Gaza.

Hamas said it was responding “positively” but kept Palestinians in suspense for days over whether it would formally agree. On Tuesday, Sami Abu Zuhri, a member of the Hamas political office, accused the Netanyahu government of not being serious about reaching a deal. He said Biden was pressuring his team to accept the plan “despite the White House knowing that the problem lies” with Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel – who remains under pressure from far-right members of his coalition who oppose the deal – has neither publicly accepted nor rejected the proposal, but he has emphasized that Israel will not conclude a deal. end the war without the “destruction” of Hamas’s military and administrative capabilities.

Like many other Gazans, Mr. Skeik said he became frustrated later many rounds of ceasefire negotiations experienced in the past. Previous efforts by the US, Qatar and Egypt to bring the two sides to an agreement all failed, with Mr. Biden suggested in February that a ceasefire is imminent, even as Hamas and Israel continue to distance themselves.

“The US used to have strong words when it wanted to prevent any crisis in the world,” he said. “But today, I see something different.”

A mourner carries the body of a Palestinian child in Deir al-Balah, central Gaza, on Tuesday.Credit…Ramadan Abed/Reuters

The first phase of the proposal was introduced by Biden called on both sides to comply with a temporary 6-week ceasefire, and continue negotiations to achieve a permanent ceasefire. That scares Mr. Skeik, who says that without an immediate permanent ceasefire, he fears fighting will resume later or even in the early stages.

“I want my old life back,” he said from a coffee shop where he could connect to the Internet. But Mr. Skeik worries that Hamas will select language and prolong negotiations, which will further hinder his ability to return home.

“We want Hamas to sign this agreement to maintain lasting peace and a ceasefire so that we and our children can live in peace,” said Anas al-Borno, a 36-year-old businessman from Gaza City. peaceful and safe”. relocated with his family to Deir al-Balah. However, he “remains hopeless and pessimistic” that Israel and Hamas will both agree to the deal, he added.

Some praised Mr. Biden for his speech last week, in which the president detailed Israel’s plans. It was one unusual move to speak for another countryand seems to be a move to put more pressure on Mr. Netanyahu after months of warnings from the US.

“I think what Biden said on TV was a sudden change for me and many others,” said Ahmed al-Masri, a 21-year-old dentistry student from Gaza City. “Recently, the United States has chosen the path of surprise, so I hope this becomes true and real,” he added.

But others doubt it will make much sense.

“The US must impose solutions on all sides, not just propose and suggest ideas,” said Raed al-Kelani, 47, a civil servant from northern Gaza. He added that although he believes President Biden can force both Hamas and Netanyahu to agree to the deal, he is “only 50% optimistic.”


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