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Aid in Gaza settlement must be constructive — Kremlin on deal with US participation

Dmitry Peskov stressed that Russia was ready to support any actions leading to the release of hostages and to a ceasefire

MOSCOW, February 13. /TASS/. Russia is ready to support any actions on releasing hostages and a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip but such steps must be constructive, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists.

Earlier, US President Joe Biden said that Washington and its partners are working on a deal between Israel and the radical Palestinian movement Hamas which provides for a pause in combat in the Gaza Strip for at least six weeks.

"We are ready to support any actions leading to the release of hostages and to a ceasefire. That said, we think that, certainly, the actions must be constructive, they should be aimed at the comprehensive solution of the problem within the framework of international law and earlier approved, well-known to everyone, [UN] Security Council resolutions," the Kremlin official said.

The AFP news agency reported on January 28 that US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director William Burns had held a meeting in Paris with representatives of Egypt, Israel and Qatar. NBC News, in turn, reported that the parties had agreed on the framework of a deal between Hamas and Israel, which provided for a phased exchange of hostages held by Hamas militants and Palestinian prisoners held by Israel, as well as for pauses in fighting and humanitarian aid supplies to Gaza. On Tuesday, Hamas said it had received a proposal for a deal with Israel that had been hammered out at the Paris meeting.

Tensions flared up again in the Middle East on October 7, 2023, when militants from the Gaza-based Palestinian radical group Hamas staged a surprise incursion into Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip. Hamas described its attack as a response to the aggressive actions of Israeli authorities against the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City. In response, Israel has declared a state of war readiness; announced a total blockade of the Gaza Strip, home to 2.3 million Palestinians; and began delivering air strikes on the enclave and certain parts of Lebanon and Syria. Clashes are underway in the West Bank as well.