Hamas needs time to regroup.
The Egyptian government on Monday proposed a ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip according to which the two sides would end “hostilities” as of 9 a.m. Tuesday.
The proposal, which was published on the eve of US Secretary of State John Kerry’s expected visit to Cairo, states that Israel would end all “hostilities” in the Gaza Strip from the land, air and sea and would refrain from launching a ground offensive that targets civilians.
According to the proposal, the Palestinian factions in would cease all “hostilities” emanating from the Gaza Strip against Israel.
The Egyptian initiative calls for the reopening of the border crossings into the Gaza Strip to passengers and goods as the security situation becomes stable.
The proposal calls for receiving representatives of the Israeli government and the Palestinian factions in Cairo within 48 hours after the ceasefire goes into effect to discuss “confidence-building measures” between the two sides. The Egyptians, according to the plan, would hold separate talks with the Israelis and Palestinians in Cairo.
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said in response to the Egyptian ceasefire proposal that his movement would not accept any truce that excludes the conditions of the Palestinian groups and people.
Earlier on Monday, the Palestinian Authority said that the countdown for reaching a new ceasefire between Israel and Hamas had begun.
“Hamas is desperate for a ceasefire,” a Palestinian official in Ramallah said. “They have appealed to Qatar, Egypt and Turkey to help in reaching a new truce with Israel.”