Israeli official says Hamas rejected US-drafted ceasefire deal proposal

Jerusalem, Jun 12 (IANS): An Israeli official has said that Israel had received Hamas's response to the US-drafted proposal for a ceasefire-hostage release deal and the movement had rejected it, the media reported.

Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad said in a joint statement earlier on Tuesday that they had delivered their response to the proposal to Qatari and Egyptian mediators, expressing a "willingness to deal positively to reach an agreement".

They emphasised their priority of stopping the war in the Gaza Strip and ensuring the complete withdrawal of Israeli forces from the territory, Xinhua news agency reported.

Israel has yet to formally announce its position, although both US President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had endorsed the proposal.

White House Spokesman John Kirby said the US had received Hamas's response and was evaluating it.



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Title: Israeli official says Hamas rejected US-drafted ceasefire deal proposal

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