Gaza truce talks resume in Egypt, without Israel for now

Gaza truce talks resume in Egypt, without Israel for now
A Hamas delegation has arrived in Egypt to continue Gaza truce talks as Israel continues its assault on the Palestinian enclave.
20 min read

Talks resumed in Egypt Saturday aimed at halting months of Israel's war on Gaza that have triggered protests around the world.

Mediators from Qatar, Egypt and the United States sat down with a Hamas delegation to hear the group's response to a proposal that would halt fighting for 40 days and exchange hostages for Palestinian prisoners, according to details released by Britain.

Israel has yet to send a delegation to Cairo, with a top official telling AFP that it would do so only if there were "positive movement" on the proposed framework.

"Tough and long negotiations are expected for an actual deal," the Israeli official cautioned.

12:08 AM

TNA’s live coverage of the latest from the war on Gaza concludes for today. Join us again at 0800 GMT for updates from the besieged Palestinian enclave.

Gaza takes centre in OIC summit in Gambian capital
11:23 PM
The New Arab Staff

The 15th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has kicked off on Saturday in the Gambian capital of Banjul.

Turkish news agency Anadolu Agency reports world leaders from 57 member countries of the OIC and beyond are set to attend, as said by the OIC said in a statement prior to the start of summit.

Gambian President Adama Barrow, who hosted the summit, shared a message of support for Palestine on Saturday's opening speech.

Barrow reiterated that a solution must be found to counter Israel's ongoing military offensive in Gaza- which caused endless human destruction for over 75 years.

Barrow added that the plight of Palestinians should not solely be a concern for the Muslim world- but the entire world.

The president also stressed his support for a two-state solution for peace in the region.

Pro-Palestine protesters rally for Gaza in Austrian capital
11:04 PM
The New Arab Staff

Videos that have been surfacing on social media have seen dozens of demonstators take to the streets of Vienna to oppose the war on Gaza.

Protestors could be seen holding banners and waving Palestinian flags, as seen in various videos.

Yair Lapid demands Netanyahu to pursue Cairo negotiations
10:59 PM
The New Arab Staff

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid says that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must send a negotiating team immediately to Egypt to ensure a deal is finalised with Palestinian factions in Gaza.

"Netanyahu should send the negotiating delegation to Cairo tonight," the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth quoted Lapid as saying.

"They must not return without concluding a deal and releasing the hostages. There is no other mission, nothing else to do. There is no such thing as victory without reaching an agreement and releasing the hostages."

Cairo ends day of Gaza truce talks with 'no developments'
9:38 PM
The New Arab Staff

French news agency AFP reports that a senior Hamas source close to the negotiations in Egypt told the outlet there has been "no developments" and Saturday's talks "have ended".

"Tomorrow, a new round will begin," the unnamed Hamas official told AFP.

Israel has made a preliminary agreement to terms that a source said includes the return of between 20 and 33 hostages in exchange for the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners and a truce that will last multiple weeks.

Hamas looking to permanently end Israel's relentless offensive on Gaza that has killed more than 34,000 people, mostly women and children.

Hamas spokesperson discuss ongoing truce talks: AJE
8:25 PM
The New Arab Staff

Here is a full statement issued by Hamas spokesperson Osama Hamdan in conversation with Qatari news publication Al Jazeera English.

"We are still talking about the main issues, which are the complete ceasefire and complete withdrawal [of Israel] from Gaza. We hope we can find some positive answers today," Hamdan told Al Jazeera on Saturday.

"Unfortunately, there was a clear statement from Netanyahu saying regardless of any ceasefire or not he’ll continue the attack against Rafah – which means there will be no ceasefire. Our understanding to achieve a ceasefire means there will be no more attacks anywhere in Gaza, including Rafah.

"We have to talk about the real position of the United States because that is the main issue that will affect the position of the Israelis, mainly Netanyahu. Guarantees are important, but we need a clear statement that clarifies the positions of each side. Because as we all know, the Israelis are trying every time to get out of their commitments."

Jordanian FM: Israel is responsible for misery in north Gaza
7:30 PM
The New Arab Staff

Following the chief of the World Food Progamme stating earlier that there is "full-blown famine" taking place in northern Gaza, Jordan's Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi says that Israel should be held "responsible for this misery".

"As the occupying power Israel is responsible for this misery, the [international community] has the responsibility of changing it," he added in a post on X.

Hamas demand to end war 'thwarting' truce efforts: source
7:27 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

A top Israeli official said Saturday that Hamas's continued demand for a lasting ceasefire in the war in Gaza was stymying prospects of reaching a truce.

"So far, Hamas has not given up its demand to end the war, thus thwarting the possibility of reaching an agreement," the official told French news agency AFP on condition of anonymity, after Hamas negotiators returned to Egypt to give their response to a proposed pause in the nearly seven-month war.

Al Amal Hospital is operating 'partially': PRCS
7:02 PM
The New Arab Staff

The Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) posted a video on X- where it showed of "extensive damage" caused by an Israeli raid on Khan Younis' Al Amal Hospital and its surrounding areas.

The video displayed destroyed buildings and rubble scattered everywhere following the attack by Israeli forces. 

"Despite the scale of destruction and limited resources, the hospital continues to operate partially and in a limited capacity, hoping to rebuild the hospital and gradually restore all services," PRCS said.

Students in Switzerland continue protests
6:36 PM
The New Arab Staff

In Switzerland's Lausanne University, about 100 students have occupied a building to protest the war in Gaza and have demanded an end to scientific cooperation with Israel.

"Palestinians have been dying for over 200 days, but we’re not being heard," one protester told a Swiss TV outlet.

"Now there’s a global movement to get governments to take action, but it’s not happening. That’s why we want to get universities involved now."

The university said the student-led occupation could continue until Monday- provided it did not disrupt activities on campus. 

"We universities are not called upon to take political stands," Rector of Lausanne University told RTS Radio Télévision Suisse.

Pro-Palestine student protestors and activists at Lausanne University on May 4 [Getty]
'Full-blown famine' in north Gaza: World Food chief
6:15 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The chief of the United Nations' food program has warned of a "full-blown famine" in northern Gaza and reiterated calls for a ceasefire in Israel's war in Gaza.

"There is famine, full-blown famine in the north and it's moving its way south," Cindy McCain, executive director of the World Food Program, said in an interview excerpt published Friday.

"What we are asking for and what we've continually asked for is a ceasefire and the ability to have unfettered access to get in safe... into Gaza -- various ports, various gate crossings," McCain continued.

The World Food Program is one of the many humanitarian groups trying to get aid into Gaza.

The World Health Organization said Friday that the availability of food in the Gaza Strip has very slightly improved, though the risk of famine continues in the besieged Palestinian territory, which is home to 2.4 million people.

Graduates at the University of Michigan demonstrate for Gaza
5:45 PM
The New Arab Staff

Thousands of graduates at the University of Michigan have started a demonstration for the people of Palestine at the commencement ceremony in Ann Arbor city.

Students donned in their cap and gowns are seen waving Palestinian flags chanting, "Disclose, divest, we will not stop, we will not rest".

Thousands of students across the United States and worldwide have kickstarted protests and encampments in solidarity with Gaza.

Israeli army detain Greek Consul's personal guard
5:17 PM
The New Arab Staff

Israeli forces arrested the personal guard of the Greek Consul in Jerusalem on Saturday while he was at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City of Jerusalem - Wafa reports.

The agency says eyewitnesses saw the occupation police attack the guard during the celebration of the Holy Fire Saturday, which takes place every year at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem on Great Saturday and arrested him.

The University of Havana in Cuba join wave of Gaza protests
5:01 PM
The New Arab Staff

Students at the University of Havana in Cuba have joined the global student-led movement for the people of Palestine.

Students can be seen holding the Palestinian flag, along with the Cuban flag, calling for an end to Israel's war on Gaza and international action and condemning its crimes in the Gaza Strip.

Students in Switzerland join Gaza protest wave
4:46 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Students at Lausanne University in Switzerland have staged occupations to protest against Israel's war on Gaza, joining a wave of demonstrations sweeping campuses in the United States.

Around 100 students occupied a building to back demands, including an end to scientific cooperation with Israel.

"Palestinians have been dying for over 200 days, but we're not being heard," one protester told Swiss television on Saturday.

"Now there's a global movement to get governments to take action, but it's not happening. That's why we want to get universities involved now."

The university said the protest could continue until Monday, provided it did not disrupt work on campus.

Pro-Palestine march being held in Berlin
4:33 PM
The New Arab Staff

Germans in Berlin are marching on Saturday in solidarity with the people of Palestine.

Protesters can be seen waving Palestinian flags, chanting "Free, free, free Palestine".

Israeli forces kill three Palestinians in West Bank
4:17 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israeli forces killed at least three Palestinians in an overnight raid in a village near the city of Tulkarm in the occupied West Bank, according to Palestinian officials and a Reuters reporter at the scene.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said one of the Palestinians had died on the way to hospital on Saturday following the raid in Deir al-Ghusun, while a Reuters reporter at the scene saw Israeli forces leave the village with two other bodies.

The Israeli military said it was conducting "counterterrorism activities in the area".


Report: Gantz urges officials to wait for Hamas' response
3:59 PM
The New Arab Staff

Israeli minister Benny Gantz is urging diplomatic officials not to submit a response until Hamas does s0 -  Times of Israel reports.

"I advise the ‘diplomatic sources’ and all other decision-makers to wait for official updates, act with restraint and not become hysterical for political reasons," he says in a statement.

Gantz said that once the group submits a statement, then Israel's war cabinet will deliberate.

Hezbollah claims attacks on Israeli military sites
3:41 PM
The New Arab Staff

Lebanon's Hezbollah group said it had hit Israeli military outpost in the occupied Shebaa Farms territory and the al Raheb output near the Lebanese border on Saturday.

In a statement on Telegram, the group said it fired missiles at a "radar site in the occupied Lebanese Shebaa Farms" at around 3:30pm local time on Saturday.

In a separate statement, it announced an attack on "spy equipment" at the Raheb outpost, which is near Lebanon's southern town of Aita Al-Shaab.

Yesterday, the Israeli military said its fighter planes struck Hezbollah targets in the Bint Jbeil and Aitaroun areas of southern Lebanon. The two parties have been engaged in fighting since 8 October, a day after Israel invaded Gaza.

Six Palestinians killed in the West Bank
2:57 PM
The New Arab Staff

Six Palestinians have been killed in the town of Deir al-Ghusun, located north of Tulkarm city in the occupied West Bank.

Sources told Wafa that the Israeli military took away five out of six bodies after besieging, bombing and destroying the house in a 13-hour onslaught.

The attack involved dozens of infantry units, heavy bulldozers, reconnaissance drones, shoulder-fired missiles, gunfire, and stun grenades.

Gaza Health Ministry calls for probe into death of doctor
2:31 PM
The New Arab Staff

The Gaza Health Ministry has called for an international probe into the death of a renowned Palestinian doctor, Adnan Al-Bursh, who died while in Israeli detention. 

Al-Bursh, head of orthopaedic medicine at Gaza's Al-Shifa Hospital and educated at King's College London, was held in Israeli detention since December, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society reported. 

"We call on the international community, health and rights organisations to intervene and visit the prisoners, to protect them from torture," a statement from the ministry read.

4 in 10 Americans believe US is too supportive of Israel
2:17 PM
The New Arab Staff

Nearly 4 in 10 Americans believe that the United States is doing too much to support Israel in its war on Gaza - ABC News/Ipsos poll says. This is up from 3 in 10 in January.

While more trust Donald Trump than Joe Biden to handle the issue, though few call it critical in their choice of a candidate.

Biden has been very vocal of its support of Israel, even declaring himself as a zionist.

Israel official says delegation not yet in Cairo for talks
2:03 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

A top Israeli official on Saturday said Israel will send a delegation to Cairo for talks on a Gaza truce only if it sees a "positive movement" on a framework for a hostage deal.

"What we are looking at is an agreement over a framework for a possible hostage deal," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"Tough and long negotiations are expected for an actual deal.

"The indication for positive movement over a framework would be if we send a delegation led by Mossad chief to Cairo," said the official, who spoke in English.

The comments came after a senior Hamas official said the group's negotiators had arrived in Cairo on Saturday for new talks on a proposed pause in the nearly seven-month war on the Gaza Strip.

Dublin campus barricaded in pro-Palestinian student protest
1:45 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Students at Ireland's prestigious Trinity College Dublin university manned an on-campus protest on Saturday against Israel's actions in Gaza, after barricading the main entrance to the site.

Student activists described the protest, which began Friday, as a "solidarity encampment with Palestine", echoing similar protests on US campuses.

Dozens of students pitched tents on one of the main squares at the university, which is a Dublin tourist attration, and piled benches in front of a library which contains the famous Book of Kells medieval manuscript.

Turkey's justice minister calls for ICC case against Israel
1:30 PM
The New Arab Staff

Yılmaz Tunc, Turkey’s justice minister, has called for the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Karim Khan, to complete its investigation and open the case against Israel's humanitarian crimes against the people of Gaza.

"The failure of the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court @KarimKhanQC to complete the investigation and open the case against crimes against humanity committed in Palestine causes the drama in Gaza to increase and the massacre of children to continue," Tunc wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

"Resisting not to open a case when all the evidence of the crime is obvious, remaining silent to the massacre will mean being an accomplice to the crime committed. Delaying even one day means losing hundreds of children."

Pro-Israel mobs chant 'Rafah Rafah, here we come' in US
1:15 PM
The New Arab Staff

A group of pro-Israel mobs have been filmed chanting "Rafah Rafah, here we come" in Detroit, US, amidst threats of an invasion in the southern city of Gaza.

The group can be seen waving the Israeli flag and taunting pro-Palestine protesters.

Harvard students recite poem of late Palestinian poet
1:00 PM
The New Arab Staff

Students at Harvard University in the United States have joined to recite the poem If I Must Die by the late Palestinian poet, intellectual, and academic Refaat Alareer, who was killed by an Israeli airstrike in December.

Students are seen lying on the steps of the institution, reciting the poem.

New Zealand and German diplomats discuss Gaza ceasefire
12:46 PM
The New Arab Staff

New Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters and German diplomat Annalena Baerbock discussed the ceasefire in Gaza on Saturday.

"This was a great opportunity to share views on the inter-connected security threats in our regions, including Russia's illegal invasion of Ukraine, as well as on our steadfast efforts to secure an immediate ceasefire in Gaza," said Peters in a statement.

Egyptian media report progress in cease-fire talks
12:31 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Egyptian state media reported “noticeable progress” in ongoing ceasefire talks with Israel, while an Israeli official downplayed the prospects for a truce.

Egyptian and American mediators have reported signs of compromise in recent days, but chances for a ceasefire deal remain entangled with the key question of whether Israel will accept an end to the war without reaching its stated goal of destroying Hamas.

Egyptian state Al-Qahera news said Saturday that a consensus had been reached over many disputed points but did not elaborate. Hamas has called for a complete end to the war and the withdrawal of all Israeli forces from Gaza.

New York police remove encampment at New York University
12:15 PM
The New Arab Staff

Al Jazeera reports that police in New York have removed students from a pro-Palestine encampment at New York University. Many students were asleep when the police began its raid on Friday.

US police have been cracking down on solidarity encampments across the nation with violence while arresting students and faculty.

Qatar considers future of Hamas office in Doha
12:01 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Qatar could close the political office of Hamas as part of a broader review of its role as a mediator in Israel's war on Gaza, according to an official familiar with the Qatari government's reassessment.

The Gulf state was weighing whether to allow Hamas to continue operating the political office, and the broader review includes considering whether or not to continue mediating in the seven-month conflict, the official told Reuters.

Qatar said last month it was reevaluating its role as a mediator in indirect talks between Israel and Hamas, citing concerns that its efforts were being undermined by politicians seeking to score points.

"If Qatar isn't going to be mediating, they won't see a point in keeping the political office. So that is a part of the reassessment," the official said, speaking anonymously.


Ukraine wants to be 'visible' in Eurovision
11:45 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Ukraine's Eurovision contestants say they want to be "visible" in the song contest, which has been overshadowed by Israel's participation.

"It's an opportunity for us to represent our culture. To show that we've got so much more to give people," singer Jerry Heil, the stage name for Yana Shemaieva, told AFP in an interview.

"We just need to be visible," she said.

Thousands of people are expected to attend pro-Palestinian rallies throughout the week in Malmo against Israel's participation in the contest.

Organisers of the Eurovision Song Contest say they reserve the right to remove flags of non-participating countries as Israel's war on Gaza rages on. Palestinian flags and symbols will not be allowed at this year's Eurovision Song Contest

Netherlands prepares for WWII remembrance amid war on Gaza
11:31 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Netherlands was preparing for its annual World War II remembrance ceremony in Amsterdam on Saturday with restricted public access and heightened security as a result of the war on Gaza.

The city of Amsterdam announced earlier in the week that it would severely restrict attendance to the ceremony on the city's central Dam Square. The unprecedented security measures were intended to keep the ceremony safe and curb potential disturbances linked to the war on Gaza, the municipality said.

Dutch authorities have said the war on Gaza and heightened insecurity in the Middle East have raised the risk of protests or disturbances.


Armed groups in Gaza rob Bank of Palestine branches: report
11:15 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Armed groups in Gaza, including one with presumed links with Hamas, last month robbed the Bank of Palestine of some $70 million, French daily Le Monde reported Saturday.

It said the funds were taken from the vaults of several branches of the bank, citing a Bank of Palestine document sent to "certain international partners" detailing the robberies.

On April 16, staff discovered a hole in the ceiling of the safe deposit room at one of the bank's Gaza branches and found that some $3 million worth of Israeli shekels destined for cash dispensers were missing, Le Monde said.

The next day, armed groups equipped with explosives returned to the site, blew up a cement protection chamber and took more than $30 million in various currencies from three safes.

Two days later, the biggest Gaza branch was attacked by commandos who said they answered to "Gaza's highest authorities", which the paper said is understood to mean Hamas. They took more than $36 million worth of shekels.

Israel denies Palestinian Christians entering Jerusalem
11:00 AM
The New Arab Staff

Christians in Palestine are being denied their right by Israeli forces to access the Old City of Jerusalem to celebrate religious rituals on Holy Saturday, which come after Easter.

Local sources told Wafa that the military is tightening its measures, beefing up its military deployments at the city's gates and obstructing entry to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher to revive religious rituals.

East Jerusalem has been occupied by Israel since 1967, and its forces have restricted Christians and Muslims from entering sacred grounds.

British-Palestinian doctor denied entry to France
10:51 AM
The New Arab Staff

Ghassan Abu Sitta, a renowned British-Palestinian plastic surgeon, announced today that he has been denied entry to France, where he is meant to make a speech at the Senate.

“I am at Charles De Gaulle airport. They are preventing me from entering France. I am supposed to speak at the French Senate today. They say the Germans put a 1 year ban on my entry to Europe,” Abu Sitta posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

The doctor was banned from entering Germany in April, where he was meant to speak at the Palestinian Congress in Berlin.

34,654 Palestinians killed since 7 October
10:32 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Gaza Health Ministry has said as of today,  at least 34,654 Palestinians have been killed and 77,908 wounded in the Gaza Strip since 7 October.

The tally includes at least 32 deaths in the past 24 hours.

WHO: Rafah assault 'could lead to a bloodbath'
10:15 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

An Israeli military incursion into Gaza's southern city of Rafah could lead to a "bloodbath", the World Health Organization warned Friday, announcing contingency plans.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to crush Hamas's remaining fighters in Rafah, where much of Gaza's population has sought refuge from nearly seven months of war.

WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned of possible dire implications for the 1.2 million people sheltering in Rafah.

"WHO is deeply concerned that a full-scale military operation in Rafah, Gaza, could lead to a bloodbath, and further weaken an already broken health system," Tedros said on X, formerly Twitter.

Princeton University students start hunger strike for Gaza
10:00 AM
The New Arab Staff

A group of students at Princeton University in the United States began a hunger strike in solidarity with the people of Palestine, 

This comes a week after the group launched an encampment, where 15 protesters were arrested.

"Millions of Gazans continue to suffer due to ongoing siege by the State of Israel. Two million residents now face a man-made famine. Join us as we stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people," the organisers said in an online statement.

Scores of universities across the US have been protesting in support of the people of Gaza, urging their institutions to divest from Israel-linked companies.

Hamas approves first phase of captives release deal
9:41 AM
The New Arab Staff

Israeli media claims that an unnamed Hamas official says the Palestinian group has approved the first phase of a captive release after the United States guaranteed that Israeli forces would withdraw from Gaza after 124 days when all three stages have been completed.

Israel's Channel 12 quotes the official saying the guarantee was communicated via Egyptian and Qatari mediators.

The United States, along with Egypt and Qatar, has been trying to seal a ceasefire deal in the nearly seven-month-old war on Gaza.

House Democrats urge Biden to lean harder on Israel
9:12 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Scores of Democrats in the US House on Friday urged President Joe Biden to consider halting arms sales to Israel if it does not alter the conduct of its war on Gaza.

A letter signed by 88 Democratic members of Congress and delivered to the White House ratchets up pressure on Biden to take a firmer stance toward Israel, a staunch ally.

The lawmakers voiced "serious concerns regarding the Israeli government's conduct of the war in Gaza as it pertains to the deliberate withholding of humanitarian aid."

Israel's restrictions on US-backed humanitarian aid delivery in Gaza "have contributed to an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe," the letter said, citing the US Agency for International Development.

Blinken says Rafah attack would cause unacceptable damage 
9:09 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday renewed his warnings against a major Israeli assault on the crowded Gaza city of Rafah, saying Israel has not presented a plan to protect civilians.

"Absent such a plan, we can't support a major military operation going into Rafah because the damage it would do is beyond what's acceptable," Blinken told the McCain Institute's Sedona Forum in Arizona.

Blinken accuses Hamas of holding up ceasefire in Gaza
9:04 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Hamas was the only holdup to a Gaza ceasefire as the militants prepared to send a delegation back to Cairo on Saturday for talks.

"We wait to see whether, in effect, they can take yes for an answer on the ceasefire and release of hostages," Blinken said late Friday at the McCain Institute's Sedona Forum in Arizona. "The reality in this moment is the only thing standing between the people of Gaza and a ceasefire is Hamas."