The Times of Israel reports: A senior Hamas official confirmed Wednesday to The Times of Israel that Qatar and Egypt are involved in mediating between his organization and Israel, but stressed that Hamas will not even begin to talk about releasing Israeli civilians it has detained along with the remains of two IDF soldiers unless Israel first releases dozens of Palestinians it is holding.
Hamas is believed to be detaining Avraham Mengistu and Juma Ibrahim Abu Anima, two Israeli men who crossed into Gaza of their own accord, as well as a third, unnamed Israeli civilian whose presence in Gaza is unconfirmed. The Islamist terror group also holds the bodies of IDF soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, who the army says were killed in the 2014 Gaza war.
A senior Hamas official, who requested to remain anonymous, told The Times of Israel that the organization’s position was clear.
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