Articles and Studies

From exchange of rockets to exchange of messages: Analysing the relations between Hamas and Israel

By: Omar Shaban

 In the aftermath of the 2014 war in Gaza, both Israel and Hamas seem to be looking for ways to sustain a long-term truce. The war, which has had a devastating impact on the lives of Palestinians living in Gaza, is the third of its kind in  less than a decade and has taken the lives of more than 2,000 Palestinians and 71 Israelis.1 But despite the continuous tensions between Israel and Hamas – the latter refuses to recognise Israel as a state and Israel remains persistent in labelling Hamas a terrorist organisation – both parties have been increasingly in contact through indirect exchange of messages. There have also been signs of increased political will, on both sides, to pursue a more enduring ceasefire that can last for many years. Is this increased contact and the slight ease of the Gaza blockade a real sign of a more sustainable truce between Israel and Hamas? Or will it once again be a temporary bandage on a wound that needs more extensive care and a longer time to heal? This article aims to examine the possibility of direct negotiations between the two conflicting parties.

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(Published by the German Orient-Institute in Berlin)

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