Hamas rejects latest ceasefire proposal as Israel slams UN resolution

Credit: AP

Hamas has rejected the latest proposal put forward by international mediators looking to negotiate a ceasefire and hostage release, while Israel has criticised a resolution put forward by the UN Security Council.

The group said late on Monday night that it had rejected the latest ceasefire proposal as it claimed Israel was "ignoring" their demands.

Hamas has said the hostages will not be released until Israel agrees to a more permanent ceasefire, withdraws forces from Gaza, and releases hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, including top militants.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement that the announcement “proved clearly that Hamas is not interested in continuing negotiations toward a deal and served as unfortunate testimony to the damage of the Security Council decision.”

He said: “Israel will not surrender to Hamas’ delusional demands and will continue to act to achieve all the goals of the war: releasing all the hostages, destroying Hamas' military and governing capabilities and ensuring that Gaza will never again be a threat to Israel.”

Mr Netanyahu has previously said Israel can achieve its goal of dismantling Hamas and returning scores of hostages if it expands its ground offensive to the southern city of Rafah.

The plan has been heavily criticised internationally, as over half of Gaza's population, more than 1.5 million people, are currently seeking refuge in the region.

As the war in Gaza grinds through its sixth month, both Israel and Hamas have insisted that their own versions of victory are in sight.

Each side also rejected the latest international efforts to stop the conflict on Monday night.

An aircraft airdrops humanitarian aid over the northern Gaza Strip, as seen from central Gaza. Credit: AP

Despite the international community demanding an immediate ceasefire solution, which demanded the release of all hostages taken captive during Hamas’ October 7 attack in southern Israel, the conflict does not appear to be moving towards a resolution.

The United States abstained from the resolution, which was considered a major escalation of tensions between the two close allies.

The US has been using stronger language with regards to Israel in recent weeks, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday saying an Israeli assault on Gaza's Rafah would be a "mistake" and that it was not necessary to defeat Hamas.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz told Army Radio that the resolution had emboldened Hamas by signalling that international pressure would end the war without it having to make any concessions.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said he was "disappointed to see" reporting that Hamas aren't engaging in conversations around hostage release.

The PM told MPs on the Liaison Committee that the UK will continue to push Israel to allow more aid into Gaza, particularly by land.

“We will continue to do everything we can, both ask Israel at all levels to comply with international humanitarian law to improve the provision of humanitarian aid into Gaza, but also continue to call on Hamas and work with countries like Egypt and Qatar to unconditionally release the hostages”, he said.

Asked about the UK airdropping food supplies into the territory, Mr Sunak agreed this was the least effective way of delivering aid.

“What we need are many more trucks per day,” he said, adding under 200 are going in each day.

“That’s not good enough. I’ve made that point repeatedly to prime minister Netanyahu as have our allies and we will continue to press for more land access.

“That is the best way to get more aid in quickly. But whilst that is not happening at the scale we would like it, I do think it is right to do extra aid via other corridors.”

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