5-year Hamas ceasefire to include the return of living citizens and MIA soldiers
A senior Hamas official said that an agreement between Hamas terror group and Israel may be achieved by the end of August, Israeli media reported Wednesday.
A source in the terror group, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the first stage of the deal would include a two-week trial. The deal would lift restrictions on the entry of goods into Gaza and at the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza.
According to the source, the cease-fire would last for at least five years, and include the release of Israeli citizens Avera Mengistu and Hisham Sayed, as well as the remains of soldiers 1st Lt. Hadar Goldin and Staff Sgt. Oron Shaul, who were killed during Operation Protective Edge in 2014.
The deal also reportedly calls for the establishment of a port in Gaza. Israeli restrictions on the Kerem Shalom border terminal, Gaza’s only functioning commercial crossing, would be eased following its recent closure.
The report came just a day after two Hamas terrorists were eliminated when the IDF shelled a Hamas position near Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza.
Israel’s security cabinet met earlier in the week to discuss intensive Egyptian and UN efforts to cobble together a long-term Gaza-Israel truce that would also include reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah.
The ministers were briefed by IDF chief of staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot on the situation concerning Gaza. “The IDF is prepared for any scenario,” the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement after the security cabinet meeting.