Israel and Hamas appear on brink of framework agreement for ceasefire and hostage deal, Israeli source says

Israel and Hamas appear to be on the brink of a framework agreement for a ceasefire and hostage release deal, an Israeli source familiar with the negotiations said.

Israeli officials believe Hamas’ latest response will enable the two parties to enter detailed negotiations to reach an agreement, the source said.

A deal, however, is still not finalized nor is it assured. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must first green-light entering into that next phase of negotiations; and it will likely take several weeks of difficult negotiations to negotiate the details of a potential agreement, including the identities of Palestinian prisoners to be released in exchange for Israeli hostages held by Hamas and the sequencing of releases.

Israeli negotiators are set to meet with Israel’s political leadership, including Netanyahu, over the coming days to decide whether to enter this phase of detailed negotiations.

The Mossad, Israel’s intelligence service which has led negotiations, confirmed earlier on Wednesday that Egyptian and Qatari mediators had submitted Hamas’ latest response to Israel on Wednesday.

“Israel is evaluating the remarks and will convey its reply to the mediators,” the Mossad statement said without providing any additional details.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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