Israel has recalled its negotiating team from Qatar following what it termed a "dead end" in talks with Hamas, according to a statement released by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office on Saturday. The negotiations, facilitated by foreign mediation, were aimed at implementing an agreement between Israel and Hamas. The deal included a seven-day pause in hostilities, the release of Israeli hostages in exchange for Palestinian prisoners, and the return of all women and children held hostage.
In the statement, Prime Minister Netanyahu's office accused the Hamas terror organization of failing to fulfill its part of the agreement. The specific grievance mentioned was the non-compliance with the agreed-upon list for the return of women and children, which had been sent to Hamas and reportedly approved by them. The negotiating team was comprised of members from Israel's Mossad intelligence agency, with the head of the agency, David Barnea, issuing the recall. The move comes after the pause in hostilities, which began on November 24, was renewed twice before ending on Friday morning.
During the truce, aid was able to flow into the Gaza Strip, providing some relief to the enclave. However, with the breakdown in negotiations and the recall of the Israeli team, the situation in the region remains tense.