Blinken visits Saudi Arabia as negotiations between Israel and Hamas stall

secretary of state antony blinken Amid stalled negotiations between Israel and Hamas, the State Department will visit Saudi Arabia next week to meet with regional partners, the State Department announced Saturday.

“The Secretary will discuss continued efforts to achieve a ceasefire in Gaza that secures the release of hostages and how Hamas stands between the Palestinian people and the ceasefire,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said in a statement. ” he said. “The Secretary also emphasized the importance of preventing escalation of the conflict and continued efforts to achieve lasting peace and security in the region, including a path to an independent Palestinian state with guaranteed security for Israel. We’re going to talk about it.”

Despite months of talks mediated by Qatar and Egypt, Hamas and Israel no agreement reached On ceasefires and hostage deals over differences on key demands.

The latest framework, presented through several rounds of talks in Qatar and Egypt, includes a six-week ceasefire and the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners held by Hamas in Israeli prisons in exchange for a six-week ceasefire and the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons. Includes some releases.

Hamas announced on Saturday that it had received a response from Israel regarding its position on ceasefire negotiations. “The movement will consider this proposal and will submit a response once the review is complete,” he said in a statement.

Blinken’s visit is scheduled for Monday and Tuesday and will come after talks with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. last month Discuss efforts to free hostages held by Hamas in Jeddah.

A top American diplomat told CNN on Friday that it could be possible to hammer out a framework for normalizing relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia, along with a two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians, before a ceasefire is reached. he said.

“We will continue to keep these possibilities known, ceasefire or no ceasefire. But for this to actually happen, we need to end the conflict in Gaza,” Blinken said. Interview with CNN’s Kylie Atwood. “And, as I said, we also need a solution to the Palestinian issue, or at least an agreement on how to solve it.”

U.S. officials have previously said negotiations to secure a ceasefire need to reach an agreement before further efforts in the region become apparent.

CNN’s Simone McCarthy said: jeremy diamondEugenia Joseph, alex marquardt and Mostafa Salem contributed to this report.

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