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With Israel politically paralyzed, Hamas wants deal now

The IDF is recommending relief measures for the Gaza Strip, but with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicted and with new Defense Minister Naftali Bennett preparing for elections, there is no one to make the call.
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) and Defence Minister Naftali Bennett (2nd) visit an army base in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights overlooking Syrian territory, on November 24, 2019. (Photo by ATEF SAFADI / POOL / AFP) (Photo by ATEF SAFADI/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Twelve years have gone by since Hamas overthrew the ruling Fatah movement in Gaza, years during which the conflict with Israel intensified. Now, however, following numerous rounds of fighting, the Hamas leadership appears truly interested in reaching a long-term arrangement with Israel. Israeli security officials identify clear signs that the rulers of the enclave are seeking long-term calm.

The first significant indication was Hamas' decision to sit out the violent clash between Israel and Islamic Jihad following the Nov. 12 killing of its commander in northern Gaza, Bahaa Abu el-Atta. Despite sharp criticism in Gaza, Hamas did not take part in firing hundreds of rockets at Israel.

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