Key points of Hamas-proposed truce

Hamas proposes Gaza truce with Israel and hopes to extend it later to the West Bank.

    The Palestinian group Hamas has proposed a truce between Israel and Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, with an option to extend it to the West Bank.
     
    The following is a summary of Hamas's offer, as revealed by Mahmoud al-Zahar, the former Palestinian foreign minister:
    • The truce between Israel and the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip would be for a period of six months, during which time Egypt would try to extend it to the West Bank.

    • The truce must be reciprocal and simultaneous on the part of Israelis and Palestinians.

    • Israel must lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip and re-open all its crossing points, including the Rafah crossing point into Egypt.

    • If Israel rejects the truce, Egypt will re-open the Rafah crossing point. If Israel reneges on its truce commitments, Egypt will keep the Rafah crossing open.

    • Egypt will supervise the process of reaching a consensus on the terms of the truce with other Palestinian factions. Omar Suleiman, the Egyptian intelligence chief, will invite whichever Palestinian factions Egypt sees fit to the country next Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss the Hamas proposals.

    • Once the Palestinian factions have agreed to the terms of the truce, Suleiman will contact the Israeli side to ensure that they are committed to the truce and fix a starting time.

    • Egypt has promised to start immediate contacts with the Israeli side to prepare the atmosphere for the truce and to provide basic needs to the Gaza Strip, especially fuel.

    • Egypt will contact Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, to make sure his rival Fatah faction does not obstruct the opening of the crossing points.

    • Egypt must try to persuade Abbas to put an end to abuses and violations in the West Bank - a reference to Fatah's harassment of Hamas members there.

    • If Israel does not meet its truce obligations by stoping attacks and ending the blockade, then the Palestinians have a right to defend themselves by all legitimate means.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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