Ismail Haniyeh, the leader of Hamas based in Qatar, arrived in Cairo on Wednesday to discuss a ceasefire in the conflict between the group and Israel in Gaza, as well as negotiations for a prisoner exchange.
Haniyeh arrived “in the Egyptian capital Cairo to hold discussions with Egyptian officials over the developments of the Zionist (Israeli) aggression on the Gaza Strip and other matters,” the group said in a statement.
Prior to his arrival in Cairo, Haniyeh had met in Doha with Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, though details on the meeting were scant.
A source close to the Palestinian militant group said on Tuesday that Haniyeh would head a “high-level” Hamas delegation to Egypt, where he is due to hold talks with Egyptian intelligence chief Abbas Kamel and others.
The discussions will be “on stopping the aggression and the war to prepare an agreement for the release of prisoners (and) the end of the siege imposed on the Gaza Strip,” the source said on condition of anonymity, as he was not authorized to talk about the visit.
A source close to the Islamic Jihad group, which fights alongside Hamas in Gaza, said the group’s leader Ziad Nakhaleh is also expected in Cairo early next week for talks.
Both groups had posted videos earlier this week showing what they claimed were hostages still held in Gaza pleading for the Israeli government to secure their release.
During a week-long truce late last month that Qatar brokered with help from Egypt and the United States, 80 Israeli hostages were freed in exchange for 240 Palestinians held in Israeli jails.