“CNo more delays, no more excuses. The time to act is now,” Blinken told journalists in Jordan shortly before leaving for Israel, as part of his seventh trip to the region since the start of the war in the Gaza Strip between Israel and Hamas, more than six months ago.

Blinken maintained that Hamas should accept the ceasefire agreement and release the hostages it has held in Palestinian territory since October 7 — a proposal he considered “extraordinarily generous on the part of Israel.”

The truce proposal was presented during a meeting held on Monday in Cairo with Egypt and Qatar, two of the mediating countries in the negotiations.

The Hamas delegation returned to Doha (in Qatar, where the political arm of the Islamist group is based) and should respond “as quickly as possible”, a source close to the Palestinian Islamist movement told France Presse (AFP).

The proposal provides for a 40-day ceasefire and the release of thousands of Palestinian prisoners in exchange for hostages in the Gaza Strip, according to Israeli media.

“We want to see this agreement come to fruition in the next few days,” insisted Antony Blinken.

Asked about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s desire to launch, “with or without an agreement [de trégua]”, a ground offensive in Rafah, at the southern end of the Gaza Strip, which has become a refuge for 1.5 million Palestinians, Blinken stated that Washington’s priority is to reach an agreement between the parties.

“This is the best and most effective way to alleviate suffering and also to create an environment in which we can hope to move towards something that is truly sustainable and that brings lasting peace to people who desperately need it,” he maintained.

In his statements, the head of North American diplomacy announced that a first caravan of humanitarian aid from Jordan would leave today towards the Gaza Strip, through the Erez crossing point, which was reopened by Israel.

“We are seeing a direct connection between Jordan and northern Gaza, via Erez. The first shipments leave today,” Blinken told reporters, noting that “this is real and important progress, but there is still a lot to do.”

The conflict between Israel and Hamas has resulted in more than 34,000 people being killed, most of them civilians, in the Gaza Strip, according to authorities in the small Palestinian enclave, controlled by the Islamist group since 2007.

The Israeli offensive is in retaliation for the attack by the Palestinian Islamist movement, which on October 7 killed more than 1,100 people in Israel and took around 250 hostages.

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Source: https://www.noticiasaominuto.com/mundo/2551350/blinken-apela-ao-hamas-para-que-aceite-tregua-sem-mais-demoras

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