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Op-Ed video: Why did the Cairo talks end without a Gaza breakthrough?

British-Palestinian academic Azzam Tamimi says Hamas's withdrawal from negotiations was in response to perceived Israeli stalling tactics

British-Palestinian academic Azzam Tamimi has said Hamas pulled its delegation out of negotiations in Cairo having come to the conclusion that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was "only playing for time."

Earlier this month, Hamas had proposed a ceasefire of four-and-a-half months, during which all captives would go free, Israel would withdraw its troops from the Gaza Strip and an agreement would be reached on an end to the war.

The Hamas offer, the contents of which were first reported by Reuters, Middle East Eye and others, was a response to an earlier proposal drawn up by US and Israeli spy chiefs.

But hours after the proposal was released, Netanyahu rejected Hamas's offer from and instead said a total victory in Gaza was within reach.

"The Hamas leadership refused to be bullied and pulled the delegation out of Cairo having come to the conclusion that Netanyahu was only playing for time," Tamimi said.

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"The Hamas Council proposal suggested a confident position which is bound to heighten Netanyahu's anxiety and increase his desperation. Pressure is building on him from various sides especially among the families of the hostages and their growing camp of supporters inside Israel itself.

"Hamas will not likely settle for much less than what it has offered," he added.

Azzam Tamimi is a British Palestinian academic and political activist. He is currently the Chairman of Alhiwar TV Channel and is its Editor in Chief.
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