Qatari Mediators Find Gaza Ceasefire Elusive

Qatari Mediators Find Gaza Ceasefire Elusive

March 13, 2024, 7:42 a.m.

International mediators have spent months trying to broker a ceasefire in Gaza. They had hoped to create "some notion of peace" during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. However, Qatari negotiators said on Tuesday the situation is "complicated" and they are "not near" a deal.

Mediators from Qatar have been working with others from the US and Egypt. They have been pushing for a truce and an exchange of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners.

At a press conference in Doha, Qatari Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Majed Al-Ansari said, "We are not seeing both sides converging on language that can resolve the current disagreements or the implementation of the deal, but we remain hopeful."

Charity groups backed by the United Arab Emirates have mounted another multinational effort to feed Palestinians going hungry. They sent their first shipment across the Mediterranean Sea on Tuesday.

Laura Lanuza of Open Arms, one of the aid groups working on the mission, said, "The objective is that this one will be the first one of a sustainable and scalable corridor for to get these humanitarian aid coming into Gaza in the following weeks and months."

Workers have sent about 200 metric tons of rice, beans and canned food. They expect the shipment will arrive in the next few days.

However, authorities in Gaza say Israeli forces are targeting crowds as they wait for aid trucks. They have accused the Israelis of using starvation as a method of warfare.

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