TheIslamic Jihad said
it would agree to hold fire if Israel halted the strikes on Gaza, stopped targeted killings and eased the passage between the Jewish state and the Strip, the Al-Hayat newspaper reported on Monday.
The London-based newspaper quoted a top Jihad operative.
As part of the of the efforts to implement a ceasefire,
Fatah official Nabil Shaath arrived
in Cairo on Monday and met with Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Mashaal. According to Shaath, Mashaal said the negotiations over a lull have reached an advanced stage, but expressed doubt the sides will reach an agreement soon due Israel's harsh terms and the country's refusal to meet Hamas' and the other terror factions' conditions.
Israeli strike in Gaza (Photo: AFP)
According to Al-Hayat, Egypt's General Mohamed Raafat Shehata has met with Mashaal and
Islamic Jihad Secretary-General Ramadan Shallah, and received a list of the militant groups' terms. He then handed the list over to an Israeli official.
A Hamas official told the newspaper the groups demand Israel to stop its operation in Gaza, halt assassinations and lift the blockade it has placed on Gaza. "A ceasefire has to be backed by Egyptian and international assurances," he said.
Another London-based paper, Al-Quds Al-Arabi, reported that Mashaal and Shallah demand "solid guarantees" that Israel won't violate a truce agreement like it did by assassinating Hamas military commander Ahmed Al-Jabari.
The paper quoted sources as saying that officials from other countries were also in on the talks.
The two leaders also demanded Israel to fulfill the terms of the Shalit deal, including removing Palestinian prisoners from isolation, allowing unlimited prison visits and reinstating educational programs for the inmates.
They further insist Israel should pull out from its current buffer zone in Gaza and reestablish it outside the border fence.
According to the report, the truce was supposed to be announced on Saturday, but the talks failed to yield an agreement.