Media: “Israeli officials in Qatar on Saturday to discuss agreement”
Israeli officials were expected to travel to Qatar on Saturday to discuss a deal over Hamas-held hostages in the Gaza Strip. Ha’aretz writes it, attributing it to news coming from the United States.
But according to American sources, negotiations for the release of the hostages are at a standstill because Hamas, which demands fuel in exchange, is only willing to release a small group of the 239 captured on October 7. “Hamas insists on wanting fuel, Israel, the United States and other countries want the release of a large group of hostages”, the sources explain to NBCnews, underlining that the negotiations were blocked before Israel launched, on Friday night, the second phase of its offensive with ground troops in Gaza.
“Negotiations were going well on Thursday, and negotiators hoped that an agreement could be reached over the weekend – the sources of the ongoing talks in Doha still report – but the differences that emerged on Friday morning led to the stalemate”. Among the 239 hostages are children and elderly people, and citizens with passports from 25 foreign countries, including 54 Thais, 15 Argentines, 12 Americans, 12 Germans, six French and six Russians. Negotiations so far have led to the release of 4 hostages.