Despite Egypt tabling a three-phased initiative for a permanent ceasefire, Netanyahu has vowed to continue hostilities in Gaza until Hamas is “eliminated”.
Israel is considering a truce roadmap proposed by Egypt which will facilitate prisoner exchanges between Hamas and Israel, according to reports on Monday.
This latest initiative is underscored by a “humanitarian character“, an Al Araby TV report said, while Al Jazeera reported that the proposal comprises three ceasefire phases.
The first phase would see a seven to ten-day pause in fighting, during which Hamas would release all civilian captives in exchange for an unspecified number of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.
In the second phase, another week-long truce would see Hamas release female Israeli soldiers, while Israel releases more Palestinian prisoners.
The third phase would allow the two sides to deliberate further prisoner swaps, as well as the removal of Israeli occupation forces from Gaza. The negotiations are suggested to last for a month, Al Jazeera reported.
Reuters reported on Monday that this plan would be the foundation of an eventual permanent ceasefire, as well as an overhaul of Hamas’ leadership of Gaza.
The Egyptian roadmap was developed in cooperation with Qatar, and, as well as Israel, it has been tabled to the United States, European governments and Hamas, according to Al Jazeera.
Speaking to Al Mayadeen on Monday, senior Hamas official Ali Baraka said that his movement “desires an end to the war, but it does not want to compromise on the prisoner card and seeks to conduct an exchange deal based on its terms”.
Hamas has consistently demanded a ceasefire as a condition for discussions about prisoner swaps.
This comes as Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, continues to ramp up aggressive rhetoric against Gaza.
During a government meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu vowed to continue his military’s offensive on the besieged Strip.
“This will be a long war,” he said at the meeting.
He added that fighting will not end until Hamas is “eliminated”.
Egypt’s proposal comes at a time analysts say is marked by division within Israel’s war cabinet.
Israel’s military has also suffered significant losses since October 7, with the army admitting to at least 489 soldier deaths, including senior commanders and officers.
Israel has killed more than 20,000 Palestinians in Gaza, mostly women and children, however has yet to dismantle Hamas’ military capabilities or rescue captives alive after nearly three months of war.