Israeli official suggests slim chance of ending war with Hamas

The conflict between Israel and Hamas is rooted in decades of political, territorial, and religious disputes. Hamas, founded in 1987, is an Islamist militant group that controls the Gaza Strip.

A senior Israeli official has cast doubt on the likelihood of a complete cessation of hostilities in the conflict with Hamas, reported The Associated Press. This comes even as ceasefire negotiations continue in Cairo, Egypt.

Speaking on condition of anonymity to The Associated Press, the official indicated that Israel remains committed to launching a ground invasion of Rafah, a move Hamas has declared a red line. The official also stated that Israel will not entertain any agreement to end the conflict as part of a deal to release captives.

Israeli media reports suggest that this statement was directed by Prime Minister Netanyahu, whose government could face internal challenges if he agrees to such terms. Hard-line politicians within his cabinet are reportedly advocating for a ground assault on Rafah.

Earlier, Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir, representing the far-right Otzma Yehudit faction, asserted that Netanyahu is determined to reject any “reckless” deal with Hamas. Ben Gvir added that the Israeli leader understands the consequences of reneging on commitments.

The conflict between Israel and Hamas is rooted in decades of political, territorial, and religious disputes. Hamas, founded in 1987, is an Islamist militant group that controls the Gaza Strip. It is designated as a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States, the European Union, Canada, and several other countries.

The current escalation of violence erupted after weeks of tension in Jerusalem, including clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli police. The situation worsened with the threatened eviction of Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and Israeli police actions at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

The conflict has resulted in significant civilian casualties and widespread destruction in Gaza, with both sides facing international condemnation for civilian deaths and infrastructural damage. Efforts to broker a ceasefire have so far been unsuccessful, with both sides vowing to continue their military operations.