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Biden hopes temporary cease-fire in Gaza could begin as soon as next Monday

Joe Biden

NEW YORK — President Joe Biden said he was hopeful that a deal for a temporary cease-fire and the release of hostages in Gaza could be in place by next Monday.

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According to The Associated Press, Biden said he was hopeful that the temporary pause to the nearly five-month war between Israel and Hamas militants can be negotiated.

“Well I hope by the beginning of the weekend. The end of the weekend. My national security adviser tells me that they’re close. They’re close,” Biden said. “They’re not done yet. My hope is by next Monday we’ll have a cease-fire.”

Biden made the comments while speaking to reporters in New York City, The New York Times reported. He was at an ice cream shop in New York after taping a segment on Seth Meyers’ late-night talk show, according to the newspaper.

The president spoke hours after Hamas militants backed off some key demands in the negotiation for a hostage deal, CNN reported.

Israeli officials had labeled Hamas’ demands as “delusional,” according to the cable news outlet.

“The major obstacles have been resolved in terms of Hamas insisting on a full withdrawal of Israeli forces and end to the war,” CNN reported, quoting a “senior Biden administration official.”

Over the weekend, Israel’s war cabinet approved broad terms of a deal that would involve a six-week truce and the release of approximately 40 hostages, the Times reported.

An Israeli delegation had plans to meet in Qatar with negotiators from the United States, Egypt and Qatar, according to the newspaper.

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