Israel-Hamas war: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged to intensify the ground war in Gaza following significant losses for Israeli troops. Simultaneously, a delegation from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), aligned with Hamas and holding Israeli captives, has engaged in talks in Cairo with Egyptian security officials.
The militant groups insist on discussing the release of hostages only after Israel ends its Gaza war, while Israel is open to discussions on a temporary pause in fighting. Despite escalating hostilities since the truce collapse in December, both sides have not publicly withdrawn from the talks described as “very serious” by Washington. The focus of the Cairo discussions is finding ways to end Israeli aggression in Gaza, emphasizing the need for a comprehensive ceasefire.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad, committed to Israel’s destruction, are believed to be holding over 100 hostages from their October 7 rampage, resulting in widespread devastation in Gaza. The conflict has led to a significant loss of life, displacement of Gazans, and dire humanitarian conditions, prompting urgent international attention.