Qatari PM Says Israel-Hamas Hostage Talks ‘Not Very Promising’

Netanyahu vetoed hostage talks last week

Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said Saturday that hostage deal talks Qatar and Egypt are mediating between Israel and Hamas are “not very promising” but vowed his country would continue the effort.

“The pattern in the last few days is not really very promising but … we will always remain optimistic and will always remain pushing,” al-Thani said at the Munich Security Conference.

Last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vetoed further hostage deal talks without consulting his war cabinet, a move that enraged family members of Israeli hostages who remain captive in Gaza. Israel is now preparing for a large-scale assault on Rafah, the southern Gaza city that’s packed with 1.5 million Palestinians.

Hamas’s latest proposal was for a 135-day truce to facilitate the release of Israeli hostages and thousands of Palestinian prisoners and to work toward a permanent ceasefire. Israeli officials called the conditions “delusional,” and Israel did not make a counter-offer during talks with US, Egyptian, and Qatari officials in Cairo last Tuesday.

US officials say the deal they’re pushing is for a six-week truce, but it’s unclear if Hamas would go for it as the Palestinian group has been calling for a permanent ceasefire and withdrawal of all Israeli troops.

Al-Thani also said on Saturday that a ceasefire should not be conditioned on a hostage deal. “This is the dilemma that we’ve been in and unfortunately that’s been misused by a lot of countries, that in order to get a ceasefire, it’s conditional to have the hostage deal. It shouldn’t be conditioned,” he said.

The US has rejected the idea of a ceasefire throughout the conflict. President Biden and other officials claim they’re pushing for a hostage deal and truce, but the US continues to provide unconditional military aid for the slaughter of Palestinians and is preparing to ship more bombs to Israel.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.