VIDEO | Andonovic: Israel could delay it, but it will certainly carry out the operation in Rafah

Israel's military offensive on the southern Palestinian city of Rafah could be "somewhat delayed" if a ceasefire deal is reached between Israel and Hamas.

This was stated by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, according to whom, regardless of when the offensive begins, the Israeli army will need several weeks for a complete victory over Hamas.

Netanyahu confirmed to CBS that talks on a week-long ceasefire and the release of the hostages are ongoing, without giving further details.

Talks on a temporary truce continued yesterday at the level of special representatives of all parties to the conflict, reported Egyptian state television Al Cairo.

Egypt, Qatar and the United States participated in reaching the agreement, and representatives of Israel were also present.

Netanyahu announced this week that he will propose to the military cabinet to approve the operational plans, which include the evacuation of Palestinian civilians from Rafah to another location in the Gaza Strip.

"When the operation begins, the intense phase of the fighting will last for weeks, not months. And if the negotiations fail, we will certainly intervene because the remaining six battalions of Hamas are concentrated in Rafah, Netanyahu said.

US President Joseph Biden was not informed about these plans of Netanyahu regarding the intervention in Rafah according to the National Security Adviser of the White House, Jake Sullivan.

"We believe that this operation should not begin until or unless we see a plan to protect civilians," Sullivan said.

The Hamas Health Ministry said today that 29.782 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip since the start of Israeli military operations in retaliation for attacks by Palestinian extremists on October 7. In the past 24 hours alone, 90 people have died, the same source states.

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