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Hamas vows to fight on, ignoring Israeli declaration of ceasefire

Jan. 17, 2009 1:00 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 17, 2009 1:00 P.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an - Hamas said on Satruday that it will ignore any unilateral announcement of a ceasefire by Israel.

Usama Hamdan, the Hamas representative in Lebanon said that the movement will fight on until its demands are met. Speaking during a televised interview in Beirut, Hamdan said Hamas has "nothing new" to say regarding a possible ceasefire.

"Today the movement's delegation arrives in Cairo. And clearly, we have nothing new to offer... Either we hear what we have demanded or the result will be the continuation of confrontation on the ground," Hamdan said.

The Israeli security cabinet is expected to endorse a unilateral halt in its attacks on Saturday night, exactly three weeks after it began its massive assault on the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile officials representing both Hamas and Israel are in Cairo where they are negotiating with Egypt an indirect bilateral ceasefire agreement. On Friday Israel reportedly rejected a Hamas proposal for a 12-month renewable ceasefire, demanding an indefinite truce.

Analysis suggest that by declaring a one-way ceasefire, it may be attempting to compel Hamas to offer more concessions in the Cairo talks.

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