Exclusive: Qatar conducts individual negotiations with Israel and Hamas in Doha for hostages

Qatar hosted delegations from Israel and Hamas on Monday as they looked to move closer to a deal for the release of the remaining 134 hostages in Gaza.

The presence of both sides for proximity talks indicated progress in negotiations, with mediators reporting that Hamas is hesitant to accept the US-proposed deal.

Despite public disagreements on the terms of a truce, Israel and Hamas continued to engage in talks, with Israel emphasizing a temporary pause in fighting for hostage release and Hamas insisting on a permanent end to the war.

After meeting with Qatar’s Emir, Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas accused Israel of stalling the process while Gaza residents suffer.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed readiness for a deal and urged Hamas to drop unrealistic demands, mentioning that the decision now lies with Hamas.

Discussions between Qatar’s emir and the Hamas chief focused on brokering an immediate and permanent ceasefire agreement in Gaza.

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant reassured the hostages’ relatives of ongoing efforts to secure their return and highlighted the need for hostages to be released before civilians can return to certain areas in Gaza.

Gallant emphasized the importance of ensuring the return of all hostages and indicated that not all hostages were included in the current deal being negotiated.

Israel’s military operation in Rafah serves as a pressure tactic, with Netanyahu confirming plans to proceed but also considering civilian evacuations if needed.

The US is pressuring Israel to agree to a truce to prevent a potential assault on Rafah, while Israel maintains its stance on eradicating Hamas before ending the war.

Hamas insists on ending aggression, occupation withdrawal, aid entry, and reconstruction as part of any ceasefire agreement.

Negotiations for a hostage deal have gained momentum, with talks involving Israel, Egypt, and Qatar taking place, although Hamas was not present.

Proximity talks between Israel and Hamas are scheduled in Qatar and Cairo this week, following discussions on the terms of a deal in Paris.

Since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas, Israel has experienced significant casualties, with a large number confirmed as combatants.

The Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this report.