Israeli negotiators have no plans of returning to Qatar yet — ambassador

The team of Israeli negotiators has left Qatar and has no plans of returning there at this point, Israeli Ambassador to Russia Alexander Ben Zvi has told TASS.

"No. At this stage, our team in Qatar has left," he said, when asked whether his country maintains any contacts with Hamas via Egypt or Qatar.

"It takes two to dance tango. Who will do it if [Hamas] is reluctant? And since they have no intention [to negotiate], military actions will continue until they eventually develop such an intention," the ambassador added.

On November 22, Hamas announced an agreement with Israel, which was brokered by Egypt and Qatar, on a four-day humanitarian truce in the Gaza Strip, which took effect at 7:00 a.m. local time (5:00 a.m. GMT) on November 24. The deal stipulated the release of Israeli women and children being held hostage in Gaza in exchange for the release of Palestinian women and children from Israeli prisons.

The sides extended the ceasefire several times but on the morning of December 1 the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that Hamas had violated the truce in Gaza and opened fire on Israeli territory, thus prompting the IDF to resume combat operations in the Gaza Strip. The Palestinian authorities placed the blame for the resumed hostilities on the United States.

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