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Hamas official says no progress in ceasefire talks

Hamas official says no progress in ceasefire talks

World

Hamas official says no progress in ceasefire talks

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DUBAI (Reuters) – Hamas official Osama Hamdan said on Thursday there has been no progress in Gaza ceasefire talks despite the Palestinian group showing flexibility.

Hamdan said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was placing obstacles hindering both parties from reaching an agreement, and that he is "not interested" in releasing Israeli hostages.

"The occupation government is still evading, and negotiations are stuck in a vicious circle", Hamdan said at a press conference held in Beirut.

Egyptian and Qatari efforts, backed by the United States, have so far failed to achieve a ceasefire.

While Hamas wants any ceasefire agreement to secure an end to the Israeli military offensive, Israel prefers a prisoners-for-hostage release deal, refusing to commit to ending its military campaign.

In Gaza, Israeli bombardment continued to target areas across the Palestinian enclave, killing 62 people in the past 24 hours, the territory's health ministry said.

The Israeli military released 101 Palestinians who had been detained by forces during the ground offensive in the past weeks and months. The detainees, many of whom complained of ill-treatment in Israeli jails, were freed through the Israeli Kerem Shalom crossing into the southern Gaza Strip.

More than 33,037 Palestinians have been killed and 75,668 have been injured in Israel's military offensive on Gaza since Oct 7, the Gaza health ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

Israel's bombardment and invasion of Gaza followed the Hamas-led attack which killed some 1,200 Israelis and foreigners, with more than 250 abducted into Gaza as hostages, according to Israeli tallies.