Documents show Netanyahu willing to end Gaza war before destroying Hamas – report

The proposal required an agreement to a permanent ceasefire as a condition for any hostages being released.

By Vered Weiss, World Israel News

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed a willingness to accept a full cessation of hostilities with Hamas as part of a hostage deal, according to a report Monday evening, in stark contrast to the premier’s long-time stated position.

On May 27th, Channel 12 reported, Netanyahu submitted a proposal for a hostage release deal that included permanently ending the war in Gaza.

The document was reportedly not shared with other security cabinet members.

The proposal was a version of a 3-phase hostage deal starting with the release of 33 civilian female, elderly, and injured or ill hostages in return for Palestinian prisoners.

However, the proposal required an agreement to a permanent ceasefire as a condition for any hostages being released.

Although the ceasefire is mentioned in Phase 2, the document stipulates that it must be implemented and that there must be a clear commitment to ending the war before hostages are freed.

The second stage would involve a “declaration of the establishment of a permanent ceasefire of military and hostile actions and the start of this ceasefire before the exchange of hostages and prisoners between the two sides, as well as the completion of the withdrawal of IDF forces from the entire Strip.”

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The Prime Minister’s Office responded to the report, “The document presented is partial and misleading the public.”

It continued, “The claim that Israel agreed to end the war before achieving all its objectives is false and slanderous.”

“According to the full document, Israel will not stop the war until all its conditions are met – that is, to fight until Hamas is eradicated, all our hostages are returned, and ensuring that Gaza will no longer pose a threat to Israel,” it concluded.

On June 3, shortly after President Joe Biden unveiled a three-part hostage release proposal, Netanyahu addressed a meeting of the security cabinet and said there were significant gaps between what Israel proposed and Biden’s presentation and that Netanyahu was not ready to declare a ceasefire.

He added, “Biden didn’t mention an important detail — that in the second stage, Israel didn’t agree to end the war, but only to ‘discuss’ its end. What does it mean to discuss? We discuss only on our terms.”

Netanyahu said, “There are many details in the deal, and the war will not end without us achieving all of our objectives. We will not give up on absolute victory.”

“We can pause the war for 42 days to return the hostages. We cannot stop the war. The Iranians and all of our enemies are watching us; they want to see if we surrender,” he said.