Blinken Slams Hamas Response to Ceasefire Proposal

Hamas is seeking stronger guarantees for a permanent ceasefire since Netanyahu has rejected the idea

Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Wednesday slammed Hamas’s response to the Gaza ceasefire proposal, claiming some of the Palestinian group’s conditions were not “workable.”

Blinken made the comments in Doha alongside Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim al-Thani. “Hamas has proposed numerous changes to the proposal that was on the table,” Blinken said. “Some of the changes are workable. Some are not.”

Hamas’s response contained amendments to the proposal that would give them stronger assurances that Israel would agree to a permanent ceasefire and full withdrawal from Gaza since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly rejected those ideas. Israeli officials previously said Netanyahu’s public opposition to a permanent ceasefire would likely sabotage the chances of a deal.

But Blinken and other US officials are putting all the blame on the lack of a deal on Hamas and claiming Israel accepted the ceasefire proposal. “Hamas could have answered with a single word: yes.  Instead, Hamas waited nearly two weeks and then proposed more changes, a number of which go beyond positions it had previously taken and accepted,” Blinken said.

He added that as a result of Hamas’s response, the Israeli slaughter and starvation of Palestinians in Gaza will “go on” and that more people will “suffer.”

Blinken didn’t go as far as Israeli officials who commented to the media on Hamas’s response and claimed that the Palestinian group rejected the ceasefire proposal, which signals it is not interested in continuing the negotiations.

Al-Thani offered criticism of Israel during the press conference with Blinken and said pressure needs to be put on both sides. He pointed to “contradicting statements from different Israeli officials” and noted that Israel launched its invasion of Rafah in early May after Hamas said it accepted a ceasefire proposal presented by Egyptian and Qatari mediators.

Author: Dave DeCamp

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