Hamas gives initial approval for Gaza ceasefire, but no deal yet

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Qatar's foreign ministry spokesperson confirmed that Hamas has given "initial positive confirmation" to a proposal for Gaza ceasefire, but the group later clarified that they haven't given the go-ahead as "it's still being studied".

Speaking to a Washington-based graduate school, Majed al-Ansari was optimistic about the ceasefire deal going through, confirming they had received approval from Israel and an "initial positive confirmation from the Hamas’ side".

"We still have a very difficult road ahead of us," he added.

However, a Qatari official clarified to Reuters that there was "no deal yet" and they are still "waiting for (Hamas') response" despite learning that the group had received it positively.

A Hamas official later told Reuters that the group is yet to respond as the Paris truce proposal "is still being studied".

"We cannot say the current stage of negotiation is zero and at the same time we cannot say that we have reached an agreement," said Taher al-Nono, media adviser to Hamas politburo chief Ismail Haniyeh.

During talks held in Paris, officials from Qatar, the US, Israel and Egypt discussed a six-week truce and the exchange of hostages held in Gaza and Palestinian prisoners.

Qatar previously mediated a truce that lasted for a week in November, during which Israeli detainees and Palestinian prisoners were exchanged.

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