Tel Aviv ,Israel-December 16 2023- Daniel Alon who was freed from captivity, speaks to thousands who came to the rally demanding the return of the hostages. Behind stand family members of the hostages Shutterstock)

A Hamas official in Lebanon said the terror organization would ‘not allow the path of negotiations to be open indefinitely.’

By Shula Rosen

As the U.S., Qatar, and Egypt scrambled to push for a weeks-long pause in fighting to build trust between Israel and Hamas, the terror group has reportedly rejected the proposed deal and has reverted to its earlier demands for a permanent ceasefire.

The Biden Administration has pushed to implement a 6-week long ceasefire before the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, in exchange for the release of the more than 130 Israeli hostages remaining in Gaza, saying that the ceasefire deal now “lays in the hands of Hamas.”

Israel declined to send envoys to negotiations in Cairo after Hamas refused to release information about the location and condition of the hostages.

On Thursday, Hamas issued a statement criticizing Israel for refusing its demands for a permanent ceasefire and a complete withdrawal of its troops from the Gaza Strip.

The terror group says Israel must allow Gazans to return to the north and make “provisions for the needs of our people.”

Although Hamas returned to its previous demands which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called “delusional,” Hamas claims it has shown the “required flexibility” in the current negotiations.

The statement said, “The Hamas movement has shown the required flexibility with the aim of reaching an agreement requiring a comprehensive cessation of aggression against our people.”

“The movement will continue to negotiate through mediator brothers to reach an agreement that fulfills the demands and interests of our people,” Hamas said.

A Hamas official in Lebanon said the terror organization would “not allow the path of negotiations to be open indefinitely.”

In an interview with the BBC, a Hamas source said the terror group doesn’t know the location and the condition of the hostages.

The US has cast doubt on this claim and added that Israel demanding a list of hostages was “very much a legitimate request.”

According to Israeli sources, there is some suspicion that Hamas may be purposely avoiding a hostage release deal and temporary ceasefire because they plan to escalate attacks over Ramadan.