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People display signs, chant, and sing as they await arrest during a protest in the US Capitol rotunda to call for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza

Hamas Kills Bid to Revive Ceasefire Deal, Hostage Release

Hamas has ruled out the possibility of talks to revive exchanges of Israeli hostages in Gaza for Palestinian security prisoners, senior Hamas leader Ghazi Hamad said in an address posted to the terror organization’s Telegram account on Thursday, December 21. “We will not hold any form of talks over [a] prisoners exchange under the continuation of the Israeli genocide war,” Hamad said.

Ismail Haniyeh, head of the political wing of the terrorist organization, met with intelligence officials in Cairo on Wednesday to discuss Israel’s offer but allegedly said that he was there to obtain a full ceasefire and more humanitarian aid.

Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ ) would have been included in talks for the first time; however, they also demanded a ceasefire before any negotiations begin – as well as the release of all Palestinian prisoners in exchange for 100 hostages. Meanwhile, one day before the negotiations took place, PIJ released a video of two hostages who were pleading to be released.

The hostages, Elad Katzir, 47, and Gadi Mozes, 79, are both from Kibbutz Nir Oz. The video shows the men calling on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, and National Unity Party leader Benny Gantz to act further for their release and warned of the dangers of them continuing to remain in captivity.

In the Israeli ceasefire offer rejected by Hamas, Israel sought the release of 40 hostages, including all the remaining women and children abducted from Israel during the October 7 attack, and elderly male hostages who need urgent medical treatment, Egyptian officials said. In return, the IDF would have paused its ground and air operations in Gaza for a week and allow further humanitarian aid to enter Gaza, the officials added. (JPost / VFI News)

“God, we pray for the release of all Israeli hostages and their safe return to their homes and families. We pray that their suffering will soon come to an end and that they will spend the end of 2023 free from Hamas. We ask that You guide our leaders into negotiating successfully and ensuring the release of all hostages.”

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