Israel, Hamas at Odds Over Truce Extension
Israel and Hamas were today once again headed on collision course with the Jewish state willing to back an unconditional extension of a 72-hour ceasefire and the Palestinian militant group denying any agreement on it, saying its "fingers are still on the trigger".
The clock was ticking on the 72-hour ceasefire between Israel and Hamas that has brought relief to millions on both sides after one month of fighting killed nearly 1,900 Palestinians and 67 people in Israel, mostly soldiers.
Israel has agreed to extend a ceasefire that ended a month of fighting in Gaza beyond a Friday deadline, an Israeli official said yesterday.
"Israel accepted an unconditional 72-hour cease fire, and is willing to extend an unconditional cease-fire," the official was quoted as saying by Jerusalem Post.
Israeli officials said the country has offered to extend the three-day ceasefire in Gaza which began on Tuesday.
But Hamas deputy leader Mussa Abu Marzuq, part of the Palestinian delegation taking part in Egypt-mediated talks in Cairo, denied that there was yet any agreement on the extension of the ceasefire.
"There is no agreement to extend the ceasefire," he wrote on Twitter.
"Any news about the extension of the truce is unfounded," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said.
Hamas also warned last night that it would resume its attacks on Israel unless Jerusalem accepts all Palestinian demands, first and foremost being the lifting of the siege and release of prisoners who were rearrested in the West Bank.
Hamas official Izzat al-Risheq said, "We haven't received a reply to our demands. Our fingers are still on the trigger."
Israel's Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz, has said in televised remarks that should Hamas disrupt the calm, "we will not hesitate to continue to use our force wherever necessary and with whatever force necessary to ensure the security of Israeli citizens near and far."
In his first comments since the 72-hour truce began, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed Hamas for all of the civilian casualties, saying it had used civilians as human shields.
Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama has strongly defended Israel, saying no country would tolerate launching of rockets and terror attacks on its cities. He called for the extension of a ceasefire in Gaza.
"I have no sympathy for Hamas. I have great sympathy for ordinary people who are struggling within Gaza," Obama told reporters at a news conference.
FROM OUTLOOKterrorismNot a Pak-Afghan-bred radical, the new Islamic warrior could be a regular American guy, swayed by Al Qaeda,...more from outlook>>>
FROM THE WEBOpinionThe second half of the month of Ramzan witnessed amore from WEB>>>
FROM WIRESIn a major clampdown on Islamic radical groups, jumore from WIRES>>>
- Rate Cut Possible Only If Inflation Eases: Rajan
- Sindhu, Sakshi, Dipa Conferred Khel Ratna Along With Jitu Rai
- Curfew Lifted in Kashmir After 51 Days of Lockdown
- SC Pulls Up Azam Khan for Calling Bulandshahr Gangrape a 'Political Conspiracy'
- Submarine Data Leak Being Viewed 'Very Seriously': Navy chief
- Usain Bolt Won Nine Olympic Golds Because Of Beef: BJP MP
- Myntra Says It Wasn't Us But #BoycottMyntra Trends
- Javadekar Becomes Toast Of Twitter On Freedom Fighter Comment
- Manish Sisodia Sacks Hospital Employee For Watching Video While On Duty
- Daily Curator: Vijay Goel's Olympic Entourage Likened to 'Bullies'
- Daily Curator: Expectant Mothers To Now Get More Paid Leave
- The Torrent Phoenix Rises Again
- Racism Row After South Africa School Asks Girls to Straighten Hair
- Dana Majhi Takes Part in 'Padayatra' Organised by Congress
- NIA Summons Geelani's Elder Son for Questioning
- John Kerry Samples Delhi Traffic, Gets Stuck in Jam Due to Waterlogging
- EC Notice to Maharashtra BJP, 7 Other Parties for Not Filing Tax Returns
- Govt Defers Mega Spectrum Auction by 2 Days to Oct 1
- MOST VIEWED
- MOST COMMENTED