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Middle East conflict live updates Hamas says hostage talks are ‘on hold’; Netanyahu repeats intent to invade Rafah



A new round of cease-fire negotiations began this week in Cairo, though a senior Hamas official said talks were “on hold” after the group received a proposal from mediators. While Israel’s key objective remained “foremost” the release of hostages, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in recorded remarks Monday that Israel remained set on “total victory over Hamas,” which would require “entering Rafah” — the southern Gaza city where much of the enclave’s displaced population is sheltering — and “eliminating the terrorist battalions there.”

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