The Palestinian resistance group Hamas said on Saturday it has positive view of US President Joe Biden’s recent ceasefire proposal for Gaza.

President Biden on Friday outlined a three-phase ceasefire plan aimed at ending the war in Gaza, in which Israel has killed over 36,000 Palestinians, destroyed over 75 percent of the civilian infrastructure in the enclave, and caused a humanitarian crisis.

Phase One is the initial stage of six weeks. Israeli forces must pull out from Gaza’s population centres during this period. Captives, particularly the elderly and women, held in Gaza need to be exchanged for hundreds of Palestinian prisoners. Displaced Palestinians, including those from northern Gaza, will be allowed to return. Daily delivery of 600 trucks of humanitarian aid to Gaza must take place.

Phase Two is the negotiation period. Hamas and Israel will negotiate a permanent cessation of hostilities, with the ceasefire holding throughout this period.

Phase Three must be allocated to reconstruction and long-term peace. A comprehensive plan to rebuild Gaza will be implemented. Efforts will be made to develop a long-term political resolution to the conflict.

Hamas expresses preparation to engage positively if Israel commits genuinely to these measures, including the return of displaced Palestinians. However, analysts express concerns about the ambiguity regarding the presence of Israeli forces in Gaza post-ceasefire.

This proposal marks a significant departure from a previous, short-term ceasefire attempt. The previous proposals failed as Israel declined to agree to a permanent end to the war and intensified an escalation in Rafah. The new plan’s phased approach aims to establish a sustainable framework.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced that Israel had authorised negotiators to discuss a Gaza truce deal following Biden’s announcement of the ceasefire plan.

The health ministry in Gaza said Saturday that Israel has killed at least 36,379 Palestinians, mostly women and children, during more than seven months of war.

The toll includes at least 95 deaths over the past 24 hours, a ministry statement said, adding that 82,407 people have been wounded in the Gaza Strip since Israel launched its war on the enclave on 7 October.